Farewell Letter to a Lost Cell Phone
By Liudmila Peña Herrera firstname.lastname@example.org
January 30, 2020
Translated and edited by Walter Lippmann for CubaNews.
My good Samsung Note 3:
Although it sounds corny, I must say that I miss you; that everything seems boring and unimportant without you; that I will try to learn to love the Xiaomi that I will buy for myself when I get my 13th month and my uncle Alcides gets paid for the pig he sold us for the 31st there in La Caoba; that now I am going back to study for my Master’s thesis because of the books or the handwritten notes, but nothing, absolutely nothing, is the same without you: neither the HD videos I recorded with you, nor the photos, nor the 3G, nor the audio, nor the music – alas, the last records of Buena Fe and Carlos Varela went with you!—. I can’t even listen to music now, my never well-pondered Note 3. I’m crestfallen and forgetful, because not even the calendar of this little task I was lent is any use at all (nor any reminder!)
Who knows in whose hands you are! Maybe at the bottom of a drawer, hidden by the guy who put his hand in my purse in the middle of the P-12 full of people squeezed and protesting. And I was taken away by the demands of my girlfriend to look her in the face and attend to her when she began to tell me, in the middle of the bus, and to all of the other guys, another of her banal anguishes of a contemporary woman: that if the boss only listens to himself and laughs out loud at his own jokes, that if the receptionist is a gossip and applies the x-ray or ultraviolet rays to every nylon jaba [Cuban shopping bag] she enters the office with, that if she doesn’t have a balance left in the Nauta account and all that blablabla that, you and I know, was never of interest to me when you were with me.
Who would have sent me to roll up your headset around your waist and put them in your purse pocket? What feminist article would have convinced me that women are right or should be made to believe they are! Nothing, I’m keeping my talking girlfriend, but I’m getting ready for a new cell phone.
Now she says she’s got me back, that I’m finally the same person she knew at the university when neither of us knew what a mobile phone was. This was because we didn’t even have a flash memory, just five or six three-and-a-half inch discs to make the many copies of the research methodology papers we kept like a gold chain inside a pullover in a Santiago van.
It’s true that I’ve been sexually active for a week since that bastard put his hand in my purse. It’s true that I talk more and am noticed to be a little less entertaining and anxious. I have to admit that I don’t wake up anymore and the first thing I do, almost without opening my eyes, is to look for Facebook, Instagram and Twitter notifications. I don’t even have bad digestion anymore!
Oh, but how I miss you in the bathroom, especially when I sit on the toilet and do my thing calmly. Now you can call and call, and if I’m in the bathroom, I don’t answer.
And how envious I am of people who arrive at the office meeting, at the policlinic emergency room, at the bus stop – and even on the bus itself – and take out their cell phone, activate their mobile data and go surfing! And those who have no data start looking at the photos in the gallery, reading their digital books, playing games?
How hard it is for me to wait without you. I didn’t know, before my partner Robert brought you “from the outside”, after I broke that iPhone that was also in use, that you could love a Note 3 so much. It’s true that when I met you you already had miles traveled with Robert on the fast lane roads in the First World Internet, but how efficiently you always worked with me, after they changed your little piece that cost me 15 cuc in that “cell clinic”.
Now my girlfriend, who criticized me so much for my obsessive-compulsive stance towards you that she even took it out on her students at the university. She took all their cell phones and put them on the desk until after class so that they wouldn’t get distracted. Now she is now the one who walks around the house all day with her headphones stuck in her ear every Saturday while she washes or lays out her clothes.
It makes me angry every time I go to stay at her house and when we talk or watch a series, between one sentence and another, I catch her activating the data and reacting to some publication of her friends with a face of “I love you” or “I adore you”. Why lie to you: I even hate it when she says “Titi, come, open me up, let’s make a selfie” (this token doesn’t have a front camera, boy). Sometimes I see her attached to her Galaxy S10 that her uncle brought her and I think she looks like a woman attached to a cell phone. I tickle her ear and she doesn’t even notice, with that modern appendage in her hands.
Then I see it all so clearly: I hate both my girlfriend and her cell phone. She doesn’t even listen to me anymore. I look like a monkey talking to itself. Oh, my Note 3, I can’t wait for my girlfriend’s phone to be stolen!
The owner of the “tarequito”. [old clunker, wl]