Pedro entered the room snarling. He always entered the room snarling. In fact he snarled all the time. Gramps told me Pedro was from Mexico. I never did understand him, always barking something or other in Spanish.

The only time he was quiet was when he sat on the French provincial furniture next to Grandmother or when he was eating something delicious from kitchen. They never had Mexican food. Roast chicken and gravy, pork and beef blended into celery flavored burgers the shape of fat sausages with gravy, or roast beef with gravy: all of these seems to be his favorite.

Mexican Residents

Mexican Residents








But no Mexican food. Ever.

Maybe he was miserable because his family lived so far away. Maybe it was the bone cracking cold of central Alberta winters that made him miserable, or gout, or a bad back. Maybe it was the constant teasing and not being able to eat all of his meals right at the dining room table with the family and regular guests. Towards the end he lost quite a bit of hair, and weight. Were his teeth maybe rotting in his head for want of appropriate toothpaste? It is possible he was losing his cognitive ability, that was before we had a word for Alzheimer’s.

As a child the further I could be from Pedro the better.

He bit me once, on the lip. He exited the room, snarling. He always exited the room snarling.

Pedro was from Chihuahua. Pedro was a Chihuahua.


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