Meet Carlos! We came across this cheeky little niño while exploring the backstreets of San Salvador city center one sunny afternoon. After stopping by the market stalls to look for some bargains we came across Carlos’ parents stall. They were selling the standard El Salvadorian staples; beans, corn, tomatoes and onions and we needed to pick up something for dinner.
While making a few purchases we noticed Carlos slowly coming towards us with an all too familiar curiosity. While in Latin America we became pretty used to getting inquisitive looks when we were off the beaten track. With both of us being blonde, fair skinned and blue eyed it’s quite the difference when contrasted against most Latin Americans.
We stayed a little longer and chatted to his parents, hoping Carlos would gather the confidence to approach us and smile for a picture. Just when we were about to give up and head off he surprised us and came running right up to the stall. Once he got to us he looked up with his big brown eyes, said hola and then burst into a million different questions.
Como estan? Como se llaman? De donde son? Por qué tienen pelo rubio?
How are you? What are your names? Where are you from? Why do you have blonde hair?
He was interested in knowing all about us, but you could tell he was still slightly hesitant to fully open up. He kept his distance behind a basket of toys and only occasionally flicked a smile at us from the corner of his mouth.
We hung around long enough to answer a few questions and get a couple of snaps before he politely said gracias and ran off as quickly as our interaction had begun. It may have only been a brief encounter, but it was long enough for us to appreciate the inquisitive nature of kids, and remember that there’s a little kid in all of us just waiting to explore the world and ask a million questions.