By Matthew J. Bruflodt
Every morning they repaint the side of the Holy House named for Sister María Antonia. It is an old, one-level, Spanish Colonial-style building with little courtyards that are open to the sky with overgrown trees protruding, the only trees that can be seen for miles. I step out on the sidewalk and stand by the panaderia, trying to think in Spanish when I see it happen, the painting of a name. They begin with a roller, with light gray paint, erasing the name that is already on the wall. And then with a dark blue and a wide brush, they begin again with the new name: C-L-A-U-D-I-O L-O-Z-A-N-O. Fast along the whole building's side, he goes down, outlining each letter, spaced perfectly, without a single drip or hesitation. And the other, el segundo hombre, fills in the bottom half of each empty letter with dark green. And before I look away, the scene is broken up by a passing bus and los hombres vanish and I am alone, estoy solo, on la calle con Claudio. * * * There is a place on the east side of Avenida de Mayo where the land raises up to its highest point along the road, and if you stand there on the street you can look to the east and see La Casa Rosada, and then to the west and see El Palacio del Congreso de la Nación. But the hill also obstructs the view of one branch of government from the other. Only the traveler who stops on the hill to buy candied almonds from a street vendor can see them both at once.