Lisbet Guerrera: My Past Life


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"Me and the other girl are having a light hearted fight with the boy over who is going to travel on the cart with the 'oval shaped wheel'"


I have some memories of Lisbet's friends, but there are many gaps to fill in here as I don't remember how they met, or where they came from, they're just there in the memory. There's one particular friend who is present in a lot of my memories. Her name is Margarita, and we appear to have spent a lot of time with each other, here is an extract from my journal of one of the happy times we spent together:

".....I'm with some other people and there is a lot of activity going on, we are preparing for a journey. There are 2 men and a woman, one of the men is my father. Besides the adults there is me, another girl about the same age and a younger boy. Me and the other girl are having a light hearted fight with the boy over who is going to travel on the cart with the 'oval shaped wheel'. The carts are very primitive, just planks of wood bolted onto a metal frame, there are two of them and they are to be drawn by 2 donkeys on each cart. The carts are laden down with goods, various sized jars containing something, I don't know what, homemade clothes, bananas etc. We are travelling to a local village to trade them in the market there.

Wooden cart similar to the one we travelled in

Us girls are ganging up on the boy who eventually loses the fight and takes his place on the cart. I don't remember much more than this, but I do remember sitting on the side of the cart when we are travelling, I'm looking down at my bare legs and kicking my bare feet through the long grass as it goes by, the grass is tickling my feet. Me and the other girl are both laughing at the boy on the other cart, bouncing up and down uncomfortably because of the mishaped wheel."

I often wonder what became of Lisbet's friends. Taking into account their ages, and the fact that all of this was fairly recent, there's every possibility that they could still be alive today, they would only be in their 60's. Maybe even one of them has stumbled upon this website, and recognized the amazing that would be!

I wonder if any of them ever knew what happened to Lisbet, or if any of them were ever even aware that the volcano erupted at all? I'll probably never know:

Last night i had a very vivid and clear dream of my life as Lisbet. I was with my friend, Margarita, and the dream allowed me to feel how close we were as friends.

It was an extremely hot day, and we had ventured out with a small basket of food in order to have a picnic somewhere.

We walked hand in hand across fields of long grass, daring each other to see which one of us could get the closest to the sheep and goats that were roaming around there.

Yanayacu river where Lisbet often played

We ended up somewhere near the foot of the volcano, i remember seeing the summit shrouded in clouds of steam and smoke against the blue sky. We stopped at a spring, and i drank some water from Margarita's cupped hands, then she did the same with me. We continued walking a bit further until we reached a stream, where we stopped and opened the picnic basket, which contained some fruit and cheese.

After we'd eaten, we used some of the rocks to build a dam across the stream, and when it was finished, we stood in the middle and had a stick fight, both of us trying to make the other fall over into the water, neither of us succeeded though.

We stayed there happily playing and exploring for most of the day, until an approaching storm prompted us to return home.

Margarita appears in many of my memories. Being an only child I think we saw ourselves as sister's more than friends. Here is another one of my memories of Margarita:

We are on the donkey drawn cart, on our way home from the village where we've spent the day buying and selling in the market. There's me and my friend, Margarita, sitting on the back of the cart, and my father is on foot, leading the donkeys along the path. It's very hot and dry, and the wheels of the cart are throwing up clouds of dust into the air.

I'm sitting on the cart, and i'm wearing some new sandals that were bought for me in the market. There's also a red and green brightly colored bird in a small cage, he's chirping away and seems to be happy enough, but i'm worried about him being caged up like that when he'd probably be much happier if i were to open the cage and let him fly free...but i can't do that, Papi would be very mad at me!

My father bought me a skipping rope at the market, and i have that by my side and i'm very much looking forward to getting back home so that Margarita and i can play with it.

Margarita is sitting in between my legs and i'm playing with her hair, tying it up in ponytails and plaits, we're both giggling because the rocking up and down motion of the cart means that her hair just looks a mess.

At one point in the journey, i remember us stopping to let the donkeys drink, and i have a quick play on my new skipping rope. Papi says something to me about taking care with my new sandals.