Extrait de "last day in Rio"
Nelson, 65, a Businessman and protector of the arts,
Idalina,, 62 his wife,
Manuel, 30, a painter,
Léa, 28 his girl-friend from Belgium.
Vinicius, a homeless kid on the beach
Voice: the story-teller
Voice : At a fairly expensive restaurant on the beach. Soft Bossa-nova music. Sound of cutlery and glasses , muffled conversations. At a table are sitting Nelson, 65, a Businessman and protector of the arts, Idalina,, 62 his wife, Manuel, 30, a painter, Léa, 28 his girl-friend from Belgium.
Nelson: Let’s have a caipirinha, shall we? (pron caïpirinia, rolling the r) . The evening is so warm
Léa: I’ll skip that one. I’ve had a lot to drink already
Manuel: This is a special occasion, remember! ( He pretends to kiss her and whispers in her ear) You won’t upset my friends, will you?
Idalina: You look so pale, carinha. ( pron: carinia, rolling the r) Maybe we shouldn’t force her, Nelson. You’re not pregnant, are you, Léa?
Manuel: Of course she isn’t!..... perhaps we’ll have a child when I’m a bit more…settled.
Idalina: Really you haven’t eaten much menina. I hope it wasn’t because of those kids.
Manuel: She’s seen such kids before. It’s all right.
Léa: ( softly) Yes, I know I have, but, well…..I don’t think I’ll ever get used to them coming to actually get fishbones and stuff from our plates..
Nelson : What, should they steal the whole fish? (He laughs at his own joke and lights a big cigar)
Manuel: Léa, really, don’t make such a fuss! . That’s the way things are. Some people eat at restaurants and others get the fishbones and rice leftovers from their plates. You can’t change it. Please forgive her Nelson. Really!
Idalina: She’ll feel better soon. Things a bit different in Brussels, aren’t they? You’re father’s a teacher over there, isn’t he? Does your mother work?
Léa: In a bookshop, yes.
Manuel (quite annoyed) Why do you always have to be the center of conversation, Léa?
Idalina: Not her fault, Manuel, I’m the one to blame. But you’re right. We’re here to speak about you and your promising career. Nelson thinks he’s found a world rank artist with you.
Manuel(modestly, but in a sort of fierce tone): I’m doing my best.
Nelson: Those paintings I saw are very promising. And you’re still very young. Have you started on a new series?
Manuel: Yes, actually I’m trying to express the way I feel about…the world… life…. I feel I’ve found something… a new track…..it’s more abstract, more …obscure, but….
Nelson ( gets his cheque-book and starts writing a cheque) Will this be enough for a start? The gallery I mentioned is ready to take at least twenty paintings for their April exhibition.
Manuel: ( eagerly) Thank you… thank you really…. For this excellent meal… and for… this cheque…..and your trust in what I do… I feel so grateful to you…
Nelson: Don’t mention it, boy. I’ve been in the art business for years, and I’m sure I’m betting on the right horse. However…. Don’t change your manner…..don’t get too abstract, too…. How did you put it? Obscure…….Keep your primitive style, boy, I’ll sell that without a problem. Abstract doesn’t sell, unless you’ve already got a name.
Manuel: ( flatly) Oh… all right…. If you think so….
Idalina: Léa… are you all right… where are you going?
Léa: Please excuse me, digestive problem I think, I need some air
Idalina: But we’re outside already
Léa: Idalina, I….. I want…..Some ocean air..
Nelson: You need some cachaça! That’s what you need.
Idalina: Nelson, dear, drinking isn’t the answer to everything
Nelson: How would you know, Idalina ?
Idalina: (firmly) Please, Nelson.
Léa: I’m not feeling well at all, I think I’ll just go for a walk on the beach.
Idalina: Don’t take risks, Léa, it can be dangerous to walk alone around there.
Léa: I’m not afraid.
Manuel: (really annoyed) Look, we haven’t finished… organizing things
Léa: Well, do continue without me then…Won’t go far… Don’t worry about me
Idalina: Don’t be too long. Shout for help if you need to. Those kids you saw before….they roam the beach here and rob tourists if they can. When they don’t knive them for some spare change. They’re on glue and crack, you wouldn’t believe it. They’re so young, but, well… You don’t care for advice, do you?
Manuel: She’s as stubborn as a mule.
The white horse
A man ( Julius Mansour, in his late thirties) is sitting on a bench, crying. The beggar observes from a distance. After a while he comes ans sits near him. Hands him a piece of material. The man turns aside a bit as if he wanted a wall between him and anybody else. The sound of a galloping horse can be heard faintly in the distance. None of the two men seems to care.
B : My handkerchief is clean
B : Can’t afford tissues. Too expensive.
JM : ………………………………………..
B : People will soon understand they can do without.
B : Without a lot of things in fact. Then we’ll all be beggars. That’s what we are meant to be.
JM : ………………………………………………………………………………..
B : Man doesn’t need that much to live. All that crap. They’re selling us crap. They’re selling us our need for that useless junk. Make us believe we need all that.
JM : What makes you think I’m interested ?
B : Well, at least it stopped you crying.
JM : Was not crying.
B : That’s right. Only shedding some tears. Good for your health. Better than keeping things inside and developping ulcers. Women have known that for ever.
JM : You’re wrong anyway. Shouldn’t be so sure of yourself. What are you ? Some sort of preacher ? A guru ? Diogenes come back to earth ?
B : I’m only what I seem to be. By the way, got any spare change ?
JM : Sure, if you leave me alone
B : I will, when you need me to.
JM : I need you to. Right now. No offence .
The beggar remains silent and looks in the distance, as if watching something or someone running across the other end of the park.
JM : Are you all right ?
B : Seen that horse ?
JM : What horse ?
B : The white horse over there.
JM : Too much to drink, eh ? Why not a unicorn while you’re there ?
B : Unicorns used to do the job, but there aren’t that many left.
JM : ( smiling) Was that an elve riding the horse ?
B : Now you are speaking nonsense.
JM : No elves in your world ?
B : Yes, of course there are, but not for what’s troubling you.
JM : Me ? I’m fine.
B : There’s something wrong in your life.
JM : What makes you think so ?
B : The white horse. I told you. Means you feel guilty about something.
JM : As a matter of fact, yes I do. But that’s none of your business.
B : You’d be surprised.
JM : And you’re wrong when you say we can do without all.
B : Of course. Meaning material things. Most of them. But when the woman you love leaves you, that’s different.
JM : How the hell do you know ?
B : Long dark hair I think. Quite rebellious isn’t she ? A strong personnality.
JM : Lara.
B : Nice name.
JM : You’re a wizard.
B : No, I’m not. Just attentive.
Suddenly JM starts crying again. B produces his handkerchief once more and this time JM takes it.