The young bus boy was surprised when I guessed he was from Spain. ”Most people think I’m Albanian or Italian,” he said.
“To the schooled eye,” I replied, “Spain is unmistakable.”
Like many of the other Spanish I’d known, all of life was carried out as if it were an extended dance. He didn’t walk; he glided. He didn’t grab the glasses off the table; he lifted them. Somehow, even among the collapsing cultures of the modern world, Spain was so deeply installed in the Spanish that it was inconquerable. Only a fool would think that the Spanish lived wholly in the physical world, for their dance was the eternal dance of flesh and spirit, conveyed through the unsurpassable elegance of their culture and the depth of their love.
The bus boy’s heavily accented English was so secure in its dignity that even simple words like “of course” or “Good Evening” sounded like the words of a noble race, perfectly aligned to the rhythm of his body. Oh, Spain! Spain! Glorious, sensual Spain! Teach us all how to love even if there is no lover — how to sing even if there is no song — but most importantly, how to dance even if there is no music.