This novel consists of a prologue and seven chapters. You can find them in this same blog.
CHAPTER IV: The Park of Legends (El Parque de las Leyendas)
The next day, Thursday, we have our protagonists, after their classes, talking about where to go, to the movies or to the Parque de las Leyendas. They had a newspaper where they could see the billboard and thus be able to choose the movie. But there was a lot of indecision. One of the movies they were showing was the very famous “Love Story” with Ryan O’Neal and Ali MacGraw. But they did not decide. At one point Isaura said: “let’s go to the movies”, and Erasmo asked her why, to which she replied: “because you want to go to the movies”. They ended up deciding to go to the Parque de las Leyendas that Sunday.
Love Story movie poster
Parque de las Leyendas is a huge zoo, which also has large green areas so that families can go to spend Sunday or any other day, with many mechanical games for children. There is practically no person from Lima who has not been to that park, because it is the most appropriate thing to spend a Saturday or Sunday with the family. Erasmo was going to pick up Isaura at his house at twelve noon. But she didn’t know her house, so they agreed that Erasmo would accompany her that night to find out how to get there.
The Park of Legends
As mentioned, it was necessary to take two buses to get to Isaura’s house. When they got off the first bus, they had to cross Abancay avenue (a very busy avenue) to get to the second bus, but Erasmo stayed a little behind, and as the cars were already approaching them, Isaura pulled him by the arm and they had to run to cross the avenue. They took the bus and when they got off, they still had to walk a bit. Erasmo visited Isaura’s house but did not go inside. They said goodbye until Sunday.
Abancay avenue, Lima, Peru
On Sunday Erasmo borrowed his belt from his younger brother because he didn’t like his belt very much. He was taking a cassette recorder with classical music by Beethoven and Chopin to listen to in the park. He left early, because it took an hour to get from his house to Isaura’s house. When he knocked on the door of her house, Isaura was already ready. She left, they took the bus and then, also after an hour’s journey, they arrived at the park. Erasmo paid for the tickets and they got in line to enter.
But it was a magnificent day, and not only for them who, as we have already seen, any day was magnificent, as long as they were together. It was a magnificent day for everyone, because it was one of those very rare winter days when the sun came out and illuminated and brightened the already joyful atmosphere. Our couple mingled with the families that were also coming into the park; the happy laughter of the children was heard, always excited to come to this park.
Sunny day at the Parque de las Leyendas
And as if all this were not enough, the music emitted by powerful speakers installed by the park administration was heard in the environment. Just as they entered the entrance door, they were playing “Tú en mi vida”, by Roberto Carlos. Beautiful song that would become his “love song”. A short time later Erasmo would find out that Isaura was a staunch supporter of Roberto Carlos; he was her favorite singer. But the lyrics of this song would be premonitory.
The singer Roberto Carlos
Erasmo thought “if my aunt Lucha saw me”. It’s just that, when he was a little boy, he had gone to that park many times with the whole family and the one he remembered the most was his aunt Lucha. And now he returned, but no longer with the family, but with a woman, and what a woman!, the most beautiful that can be found; that was Isaura for Erasmo.
They entered the “Jungle” zone (the park has three zones, coast, mountains and jungle) which is the one with the largest number of animals. Among them was an otter, which had a circular strip of water where it could submerge. The otter would go into the water and stick its head out and go under and stick its head out again and go under again. Isaura allowed himself to play a joke on Erasmo, she told him that the otter stuck its head out, looked at him (Erasmo), got scared and that’s why he submerged again.
Otter in the Park of Legends
Erasmo had money in his pocket but, incredible as it may seem, he had not the slightest idea where to take Isaura. It’s just that Erasmo’s experience with women was almost nil. After talking a little more, they headed back. The truth is that they returned very early; it was just a little after five in the afternoon.
The following Wednesday, after classes, at night, while at the university, Erasmo surprised Isaura by giving her a Roberto Carlos record, with the song they were playing when they entered the Parque de las Leyendas, “Tú en mi vida”. Isaura received it very happy (as usual). The record was wrapped in gift paper with drawings of little hearts and Erasmo told her “it’s a gift with a lot of heart”.
Disc 45 of the song “You in my life”, by Roberto Carlos
Two days later, on Friday, they went to the movies. They were going to see the movie “Taxi Driver” with Robert de Niro and Jodie Foster. The cinema was a little close to Erasmo’s house, that is, quite far from Isaura’s house. The movie bored Isaura, at one point she even said “good night” to Erasmo and settled down as if to sleep; but Erasmo, who was very fond of watching movies, thought it unforgivable to leave the cinema before the film ended. Actually he didn’t even think about it. Finally the movie ended and they went to the whereabouts to wait for the bus.
But just that night the bus took forever. Isaura was worried because she was going to arrive very late at her house and believe it or not, in her house they did not have a telephone (nor did they even dream of cell phones yet), so she had no way of notifying her family to not to worry. The bus finally arrived, and after almost an hour of travel they got off. They still had a long way to go and it was already after half past ten. Isaura was a little beside herself, accusing Erasmo for being late and he responded to her; but it was not a real fight. The two were very much in love and it was not a real discussion. Finally they reached a block and a half from her house and Isaura could see her mother, her sister and her boyfriend, in the street, desperate, waiting and looking to see if her missing daughter would arrive. Isaura told Erasmo that they better say goodbye right there, which they did and Isaura advanced alone the last meters. Erasmo headed for her house. It was almost eleven o’clock at night.
Taxi Driver movie poster
NOTE: The tigers seen in the presentation photo are in the Parque de las Leyendas.