The wind laps gently my face and the waves, too.


The sunset was lavender again, bleeding into all the other days as night indistinguishes itself from day by virtue of its music, and yelling.


I rise at 4:45 every morning to be ready to work at six. 
Yesterday afternoon after work I set out for the beach to watch the sunset, as usual. When I returned, scaffolds, stacks of speakers, and a stage replete with a bandstand had appeared in the intersection a block away from the house. Curious.

A family waits for the party to start. This city is lousy with children.
A family waits for the party to start. This city is lousy with children.

The party started around 10. It was the finest party Wednesday has ever seen. The boring speeches by dignitaries were brief, and mercifully, given by beautiful young pageant queens who were serenaded by a young man with the voice of an angel.

Fortunately, the boring speeches were brief and given by beautiful young pageant queens.
Fortunately, the boring speeches were brief and given by beautiful young pageant queens.

Meanwhile, hawkers of fruit punch, meat on a stick, grilled corn, and boiled Cornish hen eggs peddled their snacks on the skirts of the intersection. An old woman sold barely palatable salted young mango slices. The square filled with the smell of grilled meat.

Unfortunately, these salted young mango slices were not very delicious.
Unfortunately, these salted young mango slices were not very delicious.

Aguilar Y Su Orquesta was one of the finest musical spectacles I’ve ever witnessed, and also the loudest thing I’ve ever heard in my life. If I ever hear anything louder than that band, it would take my hearing clear away.

The band warms up before putting on a spectacular fast-paced concert that ripped a hole in the space-time continuum.
The band warms up before putting on a spectacular fast-paced concert that ripped a hole in the space-time continuum.

The 12-piece band, in sharp matching red blazers and black ties, had a full horn section and four singers whose high-octane choreography tightly matched their flawless harmonies. The music was a rapid-tempo cumbia and the packed square pulsed with dancers until 2 am.


Sleep was out of the question. The band was so loud that not only did their vibrations set off car alarms all over town, but those car alarms couldn’t be heard over all the noise.


The intense volume of the music seemed to have ripped a hole in the space-time continuum, because today, as I went about a day very much like yesterday, it seems like anything that happened before my encounter with Aguilar Y Su Orquesta, even just 24 hours ago, feels like it was a long, long time ago.


The loudness at parties around here also explains why the metal shop guys downstairs blast their reggaeton music. If this is what a fiesta in Bahia de Caraquez is like, I strongly suspect every person in this town is pretty much deaf.


It also explains all the yelling.


I still have no idea what that party was for.

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Written by Ada Kase (Kulesza)

Ada Kase is a freelance journalist and photographer from Philadelphia. AJKTravels is her personal travel blog documenting her adventures with her husband, journalist Aaron Kase.

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