The air was fresh and delicious with scents of mangos and hibiscus while the people were cautiously optimistic while telling stories of the struggle to return to normal. In my abuela's house there was only electricity in the bathroom and luckily there was an electric socket and the her neighbor brought over a long extension cord. We connected one small lamp and put it on the dining room table. We had a dull light that spread into the bedrooms, enough to climb into bed to be serenaded by the symphony of the coquís. After a night of laughter and café con leche, it was all we needed. I only wish my daughter had been with us to complete the quartet of mothers and daughters we had been when my abuela was with us in the states.
It's been many months since my trip and things are still not quite back to as they were and I suspect that Puerto Rico won't ever quite be the same. Whether that's positive or negative remains to be seen and will probably be debated for a generation. As for now, esperanza is what I keep in my heart for Puerto Rico to emerge from the darkness and create a light that shines brighter than ever.