Alex and Mariana sat next to a tree for their lunch break. It was the month of November, almost summer in the southern hemisphere, and everyone was studying for their finals. Mariana was also studying to become a nurse, and what brought them together was not their shared love for the career, but business. Let’s say business in the broad sense of the word, because in reality, Alex was looking for something Mariana offered. During their first year of school, nursing students were required to learn and practice how to insert intravenous lines, and, of course, they would be tested on their technique. As panic swept over the students afraid there were going to fail and look incompetent, Mariana saw an opportunity. She contacted a few older students and ones in other degree programs, offering to pay them if they gave a fellow student two attempts to insert an IV. A few brave students accepted the offer, and Mariana started offering this service to her peers in exchange for a small fee, which included a percentage for administrative charges (that went straight to her pocket).
“Excuse me?” Alex had said to a bright and perky Mariana, unsure if she was the right person. She had overheard a classmate speaking about a girl who would let you practice on a real arm in exchange for a few pesos, but Alex was not entirely sure if it was real or a joke. She was so scared, she decided to find out. She asked around and word had it that the mastermind behind this plan was a first-year student with curly hair and a bit of an attitude. She did not see any attitude, she was actually quite nice, but Alex knew that someone who created such a plan must be more than just a pretty and cordial face.
“Yes? Can I help you?” Mariana asked, studying her face. She knew that although there wasn’t anything illegal in principle, her business would not be accepted and likely not tolerated by school officials. She had tried to do everything online with different means of communication, but still some clueless students would pop up eventually, asking for the organizer. Most people thought it must be a guy behind it, and although it made her feel that her identity was safe, it was still very annoying as she was very proud of her whole plan.
“Uh, maybe. We are both in our first year, although you probably don’t know me. I thought that if you are as lost as I am with the IV lines, maybe we could practice on each other?” – Alex had started talking to her without looking in her eyes and with a bit of uncertainty. However, now she looked straight at Mariana, making sure to clearly articulate the last two words.
Mariana was taken aback. She had seen Alex in a few classes and had not really thought about her much. She was usually alone but seemed friendly and smart, although she preferred not to answer in class. However, she liked the proposition; everyone was very much willing to pay, but no one had gone as far as to offer their own arm in return. Alex had just become much more interesting, and Mariana was very much intrigued.
“Uh… you poke mine and I poke yours?” Mariana asked matter-of-factly.
“Uh huh,” replied Alex with some hesitation.
“Alright, cool! I’ll get some Abbocaths from the lab. Are you able to get some too? Probably not too thick as I don’t want to be walking around with wholes in my body!”– Once again in what would become her signature laugh and brighten up Alex’s days for the following years, Mariana tilted her head back as if she’d made the funniest joke in the entire world.
Just like that, they became friends.
(…to be continued…)
Series – Evanescent
January: If Something Can Go Wrong…It Will – Jonay Quintero Hernández (Spain)
February: The Planet of Pleasure – Nane Sevunts (Armine Asryan) (Armenia)
March: Evening with Jackie Chan – Gennady Bondarenko (Ukraine)
April: Vuvuzelas, Walkie-Talkies and Madiba Magic – Sarah-Leah Pimentel (South Africa)
May: Remembering – Seyit Ali Dastan (Turkey)
June: 5-4-3-2-1 – Talia Stotts (America)
July: Getting Ready for Newborns – Marilin Guerrero Casas (Cuba)
August: Regrets – Kate Korneeva (Russia)
September: A Hollow Pursuit – Diana Haidar (Syria)
October: The Test – Alejandra Baccino (Uruguay)
November: A Life Rekindled – Lauren Voaden (United Kingdom)
December: Translation Perfect – Zhang Lu (China)
Special: Catching Water III – Javier Gomez (Argentina)
Background – Context
Transadaptation Volume 2: Conceived – Childhood Transadapted, (eds.) Angelika Friedrich, Yuri Smirnov and Henry Whittlesey (2021)
Transadaptation Volume 1: In the Middle – Prelude to a Contemporary Transadaptation, (eds.) Angelika Friedrich, Yuri Smirnov and Henry Whittlesey (2020)
Peripatetic Alterity: A Philosophical Treatise on the Spectrum of Being – Romantics and Pragmatists by Angelika Friedrich, Yuri Smirnov and Henry Whittlesey (2019)
La Syncrétion of Polarization and Extremes Transposée, (eds.) Angelika Friedrich, Yuri Smirnov and Henry Whittlesey (2019)
The Codex of Uncertainty Transposed, (eds.) Angelika Friedrich, Yuri Smirnov and Henry Whittlesey (2018)
L’anthologie of Global Instability Transpuesta, (eds.) Angelika Friedrich, Yuri Smirnov and Henry Whittlesey (2017)
From Wahnsinnig to the Loony Bin: German and Russian Stories Transposed to Modern-day America, (eds.) Angelika Friedrich, Yuri Smirnov and Henry Whittlesey (2013)
Emblems and stories on the international community
Perception by country – Transposing emblems, articles, short stories and reports from around the world
Cover photo: Montevideo, Uruguay – Enjoying – Fabrizio Rivero Vernengo (Shutterstock)
Source: The Codex of Uncertainty Transposed