“What’s your favourite cartoon character?”
“Muerto Mouse,” he said.
(Valeriu started to laugh)
The boy put on a look of defiance.
“No, no…we’re not laughing at you,” I said. “It’s just…we’ve never heard of Muerto Mouse.”
“In America, when you have never heard of something you laugh at it?”
We saw him one last time just outside the little shack in which the chicken man usually set up, on the streets of Veracruz. He was sleeping in a plastic crate, hooked to the back of a rusty bicycle, which was chained to a post. He was small enough that he could fit, in the fetal position, in the rectangular crate and sleep soundly.