Several years ago, I attended a wedding. As one of the bridesmaids, I stayed at the bride’s house the night before the wedding day. As was tradition in the place, there was a dance to celebrate the bride’s last night as a maiden.
Boys from the entire barrio were expected to come. The bride’s family invited girls from other barrios to attend the dance. Boys who wanted a chance to meet and talk with the girls they fancy were supposed to pay a price for a dance in which nobody was entitled to the floor except the one or ones who paid. Usually, a group of four or five boys contribute their money to raise an amount for a dance. The more money they have, the more chances they can get of meeting the girls they want.
I experienced one such dance. I was led by my partner to the dance floor and we started to get to know each other. We were beginning to feel comfortable with each other when we heard a commotion from the public. Then, a girl shrieked and everybody started to run to and fro. The father’s bride took control of the crowd and got to the bottom of the problem.
We learned later that the bride’s cousin, a girl of 17, brought her pet snake to the dance, coiled it in her arm and held it for everyone to see. Now, what kind of idiot would bring a snake in public no matter how harmless it is?
Then I realized that my partner left me on the dance floor and I never saw him again. So, the girl with the snake wasn’t the only idiot that night.