27.3.1976

Querido Papá,

It’s Saturday, finally the weekend after a strange week. I don’t know if you’re watching and seeing what has been happening here, and I don’t really know exactly what’s going on. Mamá woke me up three days ago and said that my school was closed because something had happened in the government. She said the the military has taken over again, and that Isabel Perón was gone.

I never thought that I would miss going to school, but the whole day I was very restless. Mamá made me come with her to the hardware store, even though I complained and said that I just wanted to go and hang out with Rosa. I even promised her that we would stay inside Rosa’s house all day, but Mamá still didn’t budge. She said she was worried that there would be violence in the streets if the guerillas got angry and she didn’t want me getting hurt. I told her, “There’s been so much violence, we hear about it all the time, but I’m still here, aren’t I?” She slammed her hand on the counter top and told me to go sweep out the storeroom.

It’s not as though she actually needed my help during the day, either. There were very few customers that day, but those who did come in either got what they came for and left very quickly, or they stood for a long time by the counter with Mamá listening to the radio. One of our regular customers came in during the afternoon and joked with Mamá about how maybe all of the political troubles would go away now. I certainly hope so. Mamá won’t say it, but I know she’s been worried. She found her first gray hair the other day – when she noticed it she laughed and said that if you were here you would have told her she was too pretty to be getting old.

We got a surprise this morning – Enrique came home from university in Buenos Aires. He said that there’s been a lot of trouble in his school with students protesting and that some of them have been missing from classes recently, and he doesn’t want to be associated with people like that. So for now he’s back home with us and can help out at the store. I have to say I’m glad he’s back home – he’s grown up a whole lot and we actually get along now. Mamá has said that maybe when things have settled down he should invite Rosa and her older sister Rocio over for dinner. I don’t know how well this will go, because I’ve never gotten the impression that Rocio ever liked Enrique. They just kind of ignored each other a lot.

Sending you all our thoughts and prayers in hopes that things will be better soon,

Malena

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