Image  I’m squatting on the rocky ground tearing chunks from the carcass of a broiled chicken, licking the oily juices from my fingertips, and surveying the flat, empty land of  our small farm.  My brother-in-law, Adolfo, hunches beside me spitting seeds from a mouthful of tropical carambola fruit.  We and my wife, Carmen, have been taking classes on the weekends at the university for almost a year now.  We think we know what’s coming, what to do, and what the outcome will be.  As it turns out, we know absolutely nothing of any of that but we are engaged in the concept, energized, committed and healthy.  Against a light morning breeze, Adolfo lights up a cigarette.  The aroma reminds me of my own addiction years back and how hard it was to break.  It also reminds me of what a pleasure smoking is, raw smoke and fire moving through you, and then that nicotine calm.  “What do you think?” I ask him as he taps ash to the dirt.  “Let’s do it. Let’s make a million,” he says with an impish Latin grin that twitches his black mustache up on one side.  We rise together.  A few feet away are the tape measure and chalk line.  Though low over the horizon, the rising sun is already hot.  The air is humid and an insect I cannot see bites the back of my neck. A flock of seven long white heron glides past silently overhead under a light blue sky. My boot toe catches on a projecting rock and I stumble a bit.  Adolfo laughs quietly.  It begins.

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