Why did I want to manage Agua? I wanted to help of course, set him free from the clutches of the fight mob, give him the chance to earn a decent living. Every fighter deserves that-more than most I would say-but it was also something else. His life was a frolic; he was a young colt prancing. Whenever we walked together along Avenida Central, passing the park in the shade of the great Banyan trees and further into the talons of the barrios commerce-through the honour guard of offerings: Machetazo, four stories, the pride of the area, selling all manner of food, clothes, furniture, building and sporting goods, its air conditioning reaching meters into the sweltering street, luring in the perspiring masses, keeping a few stray dogs who perpetually occupied the footpath in front of its doors, cool as popsicles: the Chinese groceries, expensive and sullied: material, clothes, haberdashery, and electronic shops, Agua was acknowledged. There didn’t seem to be a man who didn’t recognize him, and if they were oddly ignorant, he would enthusiastically educate them. Extraordinary, considering he was not a champion and a foreigner to boot. But it was his manner of fighting; he gave everything and in such a selfless manner that people were moved to forget nationalist notions. Not that the fight game ever nurtured deeply those inclinations; people valued more true spirit and unadulterated guts, a snapping straight left or big right hand. Agua could claim those. So, I thought, I also liked the attention I got through of him. I did, who wouldn’t, but it was more the recognisable sort of happiness he gave me. I’ve always felt good around salt of the earthers, sort them out my whole life. Worked with miners, fishermen and fighters, knocked about with the riff raff of survival in all manner of trades. They keep things simple, take enormous pleasure in the details of the daily, are up for the unexpected and good to have at your shoulder. Their stories are worth the listen. They always made my life light brighter.