Lita inadvertently created the “hurry-up, hurry-up” wound in me, which lasted over 66 years of my life.
Always limited to how much TV I could watch, there was only so much reading I could do.
A born neat-freak perfectionist like my Mom and Lito, I had my baseball cards, football cards and comic books all arranged alphabetically in order.
Also a champ at moving my bedroom furniture around starting at 7 years of age, Lita was in wonderment at my strength and early interior decorator skills. (yeah sure, Al!)
It was during one of these bedroom face-lifts that my perfectly lined-up Tonka Trucks and Matchbox cars were totally disarranged and some dented when the beautiful new desk that Lito bought me fell on top of them.
Burdened with the same incendiary temper as Lito and sometimes my Mom ~ all of us screamers, I cursed by yelling “fuck you, God!”
Immediately aware and ashamed like Cain was when he killed Abel, I immediately repented and still do to this day when it comes to mind.
Due to her brothers’ and sisters’ sibling competition and meanness in Costa Rica and her ensuing betrayals at work in San Francisco, Lita became very cynical of close friendships.
Always wary of the friends that I played with and brought home, all were considered hoodlums.
Yet 2 of her admonitions stayed with me all of my life:
° “tell me who your friends are and I will tell you who you are.
° "and it is better to be alone than with bad company.”
More emphatic in her native Spanish, I wish I would have adhered to her 2nd commandment much, much earlier in life.
My Lord ~ was she right!
Giving up her career was Tappy’s and my blessing.
Every day when we arrived home from school, Lita fixed us a yummy warm snack before having to do our homework.
Allowed to play only in front of our house where she could keep a watchful eye on us, even though Tappy was 4 years younger, we became each other’s best friends.
Pitching tents in the backyard made out of shower curtains draped over old chairs, brooms and the ironing board, Lita would sometimes squat and join us and pretend that she too was part of Davy Crockett’s militia by donning a coonskin cap.