Saturday, November 12, 2011

My First Adoption; a Brangelina Story (My Trip to Belize)

         A trip to Central America would not be complete until I fully realized the full potential of seriously taking a Black orphan back to America in my carry-on. This little piece of chocolate delight came in the form of an eight year old named Cameron. Pilar and I were perched upon a balcony at a restaurant adjacent to our hotel when we noticed a shoeless chocolate dumpling wandering the streets around seven o'clock in the evening. With a mouth full of fish, I cried out "Are you okay?". That was the best I could think of in my state of half inebriation. The little homeless wonder kept pointing at his mouth which I assumed was a clear indication that he was in need of desperate nourishment. Pilar instructed me to go downstairs and fetch the little nugget. When Mexicans see an opportunity, they seize it! Normally I would have responded defensively to this proposition, but due to the seemingly unlimited amount of rum in my hotel room, I did not bat an eyelash during my non-existent consideration of the notion of abducting a child. I jumped the steps two at a time to scoop up the Caribbean infant. I scurried into the dark streets to find the little boy (which was very difficult on account of this boy being as dark as night time, if he wasn't smiling, I never would have found him). "Are you hungry?" I asked the little nugget. He simply shook his head in response. "Come with me", I said, feeling like Michael Jackson.

           I grabbed an elevated stool for the little boy to sit on so that he would be at an even level between Pilar and myself. We asked for an extra plate for the nugget. Pilar and I consolidated all leftover food on our plates to create a meal for the orphan. "What's your name", asked Pilar. "Cameron", the little boy said with a mouth full of fish. "How old are you?", I inquired. "Me ahh aaaaaaaayeeeeeet" he responded. Pilar and I stared at each other; both perplexed. After a long discussion, we concluded that Cameron was trying to communicate to us in his Creole that he was eight years old. The rest of the conversation displayed the same pattern. One of us would ask him something, Cameron would respond unintelligibly, and Pilar and I would be stuck to play a game of 21 questions trying to decipher what the Christ the toddler was saying. After a good half an hour, we learned that Cameron enjoyed football and had two girlfriends. The nuggets grow up so fast, don't they? After we paid our bill, we escorted the shoeless wonder outside. "Where are your parents?", I asked. "Jump Street", he responded. The waitress at the restaurant informed us that Jump Street was a long way away. Cameron told us that his parents work in the fields and weren't going to be back home until later in the evening. This would leave the little boy to wander the streets with no shoes on for hours on end. However, I must point out that for some reason it is quite common for many Belizeans to not wear shoes on rural streets. I tried to trust in Jesus that it would all be fine. Pilar and I had a company engagement we had to go to so it was imperative that we bounced. Before we left, we told Cameron that we would be at the Bliss Center later if he was bored. Pilar and I waved goodbye to the little chocolate dumpling. We went back to the hotel, freshened up, and made our way to the Bliss Center.

         Pilar and I walked down Albert Street in pitch black at seven thirty at night. We moved at an expedient pace as to avoid the potential of unwanted rape. Finally we made it to the Bliss Centre to meet the rest of the company. Who was standing at the door waiting for us not but four feet tall? Cameron! We were so excited to see him. We found out that apparently he had seen B-More on her way towards the Bliss Center and just followed her there. However, I would like to negate this fact and focus on the idea that Cameron had truly accepted the fact that Pilar and I were his new adoptive parents. I couldn't wait to show off our beautiful new cocoa finding to the rest of our company. How jealous they would be that Pilar and I had become the next Brangelina! We were just the most adorable family ever. Queen Jemima found him to be quite intriguing. Evangeline almost burst into tears when she realized he didn't own a pair of shoes. Shoniqua became quite distraught as to the fact that Cameron truly had nowhere to go. Pilar, Shoniqua, and B-More eventually decided to take Cameron back to the restaurant where we had met him because it seemed that the owner knew him. We found out later that she was in fact his aunt. Thank you Jesus that she wasn't a math teacher if you know what I'm saying.

        A few days later, I decided to wander through downtown Belize in the middle of the day in search of some delicious street food and a soda. I'm a simple girl with simple needs. I passed by several multi-colored establishments filled with copious amounts of products including but limited to sneakers, t-shirts that said "You better Belize it", and tamarind soda. I dismissed most of them to finally come across a sketchy concession stand with parallel bars and dust atop the counter. The location was hideously unappealing but it had the one thing that I could not turn down; Asian employees! I was over the moon. I asked Chung Lee for a "tamarind soda". She looked at me and said, "U wan cigarette?". No bitch, I want soda!!! Clearly she had not successfully completed Hooked on Phonics. After going back and forth with Chung Lee for what felt like an eternity, I finally gave in and just pointed to the damn Fanta. Disappointed, I made my way back to Hotel Mopan, unfortunately with great difficulty. My directional skills are about as good as Mariah Carey's acting ability. A three legged cockier spaniel could find his whereabouts quicker than I could. I wandered around aimlessly for a good hour looking for Albert Street. After some time, I finally could smell the sent of plantain. I knew I was close! As I traipsed down the street, closer and closer to my destination, I stumbled across an adorable chocolate midget in a red t-shirt. It was Cameron! "Oh my gosh! Hi Cameron! How are you? It's so great to see you again. What have you been up to?", I said with much enthusiasm! "Give meee ya drink!" he instructed as he stared at my orange Fanta. At that precise moment I realized that I was no longer his Father, I was his BITCH! Officially. This was awful. I gave the little nugget what he asked for and wandered my way back to the hotel (which he pointed out to me), never to see Cameron again.

          The biggest lesson I have learned from this experience is that adoption is best when it is temporary. Had my relationship with Cameron gone any further, I probably would have ended up turning into Tina Turner: abused, shameful, and with a great pair of stems. It just goes to show that the delightful combination of a Mexican and a bi-racial Canadian is not always fool proof. I do not regret the time that Pilar and I spent nurturing, caring, and guiding this little lost and shoeless wonder of Belize. Cameron will always be a part of our lives. I hope that the next time he swindles a soft drink from a gullable North American, he will think of me.


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