Dinner with "family"

Thursday, March 31, 2005

I met a cousin from Mexico City yesterday. I hadn't seen her in like 10 years at least, and I almost thought I might not recognize her. Luckily she recognized me. She is just like her mother (who I say last year at a wedding), short and a whirlwind of energy and assertiveness. She has these menacing little eyes that just bolt at you. Somewhat intimidating, actually. But she's nice (at least to me, haha).

We had lunch, and since she's this high profile cook she ordered the really good stuff from the Cuban restaurant chain she oversees all over the country. Yum.

Later that same day we went to dinner at a new ritzy Italian restaurant that had been recommended to her. She ordered some really good wine, some totally unnecessary appetizers and some risotto (which I found out was rice...ha!). I felt like a total culinary ignoramus, but it was an educational experience of the best type, ha. She even chatted up with the restaurant manager and offered some suggestions for the menu! That was so cool, ha-ha.

Anyways, half-way through dinner we start talking about our past relationships; actually, just hers. She talks about her past boyfriends and how this one guy was the love of her life but they broke up and life went on. She then asks me if I've ever experienced that, the "one that got away". I say yes. And then, quite bluntly, she asks "But was it a girl?” This caught me somewhat off guard. True, she had made comments regarding some of her gay friends, I never even considered flat-out telling her I was gay. But her gaydar knew better and her being as frank as her mother, looking back it wasn't that big a surprise.

So I told her that my love had been a guy. And that we had recently broken up. This opened the gates to a whole couple more hours of conversation and revelations. I was surprised more than a few times by her sexual frankness and total honesty about her personal life. Neat. It was a little uncomfortable at times because even though she is family, I didn't really KNOW her that well (and I have trust issues). Anyways, I ended up sharing a lot myself, more out of response to her straightforwardness that out of actual trust. It was quite an interesting evening. Sadly I offered to pick up the check and it was like $100 USD, which is a HUGE amount here in MX, haha.

You know, family ties are quite interesting if bizarre things. Here I am, meeting someone who very well could be considered a stranger, and I bonded with her incredibly because she is my second cousin (telling her things I've never even told my first cousins). Family... does anyone ever realize the absurdity that lies beneath the surface?

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