Wednesday around 3PM
When you remove the cost factor around alcohol and place these white Western animals into an environment where truly anything goes; it’s incredibly entertaining if not a little bit sad.
I learned very quickly that it doesn’t matter what language you speak. Long conversations took place with Dutch, French and Spanish speakers. The liquor tends to mend the broken English we’re all speaking.
Upon my arrival and after unpacking my bags; I walked the streets around the baseball field across from my hotel. This walk was a lot longer than I’d anticipated. Walking in Sosua was intriguing. I went for three walks that day and was hounded by locals each time.
Winding through back roads I’m still half-cut from the champagne and Heineken on the flight; the two forty-ounce bottles of Presidente on the bus; and the lack of sleep. I appreciated the fresh-air and anonymity.
On the first walk; a man followed me. Talking about how everyone needs a friend in the Dominican Republic.
“Chica, Dominican Chica for you, I get.”
“You no like chica?”
Woman for me at home. No chica.
“Okay, okay. Praise the baby Jesus. I get anything for you, you want. Cocaine? I get best cocaine, good price. Marijuana? I get for you. I get you cocaine to try first, no charge.”
No drugas [droog-as].
I have no idea if this is the Spanish word for illegal narcotics; but it seemed fitting to add the ‘-as’ to the end of the word and roll my tongue. Either way, it worked; but he still wouldn’t fuck off. I rounded a corner to the left; half in an attempt to drop this fool; but mostly because it was on my route around the baseball field.
“Mr. Justin, my friend (pronounced fren); no go down there. Dangerous. That where real Dominican live, not safe.”
I’ll be alright.
“Wait, Mr. Justin, my friend. You give Diablo the money for the milk for my little baby.”
No, but what’s her name?
“Emilie, her name Emilie.”
I parted ways by rounding the corner and smiling with my hand on my chest, nodding goodbye to Diablo. These hustlers are crafty; I’ll give him that. This feigned amicability on both our parts was apparent. I picture some of my less traveled and lighter skinned countrymen being pulled in by his charm. The aggressive nature of the economically disadvantaged is hard to fathom or understand for almost any privileged Westerner. I picture people I know being drawn into it; almost as if it was their own idea to blindly follow the hustler. Their game is to make you think it was your idea.
Drugs, women, charity and fear. All to drain my pockets.