Una Candelita | A 5-Minute Freewrite in support of @omairita
I just learned that the game we used to call La Candelita (a little fire) is also called “four corners,” so I decided to write this Friday freewrite using the memories of that game in conjunction with some thoughts about the hard situation Venezuelans live now every time they face medical issues.
La candelita was a fun physical game we used to play back in the day, when kids actually interacted with other humans in the real world.
Unlike the version I have seen in English, this game was not an eliminating game, but a chasing game. Simply put, five players picked corners and an “it” (with a coin or any other selection design). The player who became “it” would be in the middle of the square formed by the four corners (natural objects, like rocks or trees; or artificial area painted by players on sidewalk, playground, or pavement). He or she would then ask any of the four players on the corners for “una candelita” (a little fire). The player would answer “por allá fumea” (follow the smoke over there). The "it" player would then head in the direction of the corner indicated while players trade places in the square. If the “it” player intersects a corner, then he or she will keep that corner and whoever player is left out becomes the “it” that will ask for a candelita.
I have fond memories of the hall in my high school (Juan Manuel Cajigal) during recess. It was a game I liked to play because it was physical, but we did not get our uniforms dirty. It was a game that demanded speed, cunning, and peripheral vision.
Ironically, when it comes to solving problems in our country (especially involving public services) we feel like we are playing la candelita. We are sent from one place to another and in no place we find solution to our problems. If anyone gets sick, putting together the money to cover medical expenses becomes another form of candelita.
That’s why I am sharing the rewards of this post with @omairita, a fellow hiver who happens to live also in Cumaná. @mariajruizb started an initiative to collect money to help her mother-in-law and I want to contribute my share. You can see the details of the initiative here
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