Thursday, January 13, 2022.
That’s the date when the fourth season of the Bitcoin Italia Podcast will start and, consequently, also the date when Mission El Salvador will end. It’s just around the corner. This is therefore the third last day of this diary that has kept me so much company in this month and a half, but that has also cost me so much effort and dedication. Constancy is not always one of my best qualities, I admit. It is therefore a remarkable achievement that I was able to dedicate myself to it with such zeal.
We wake up very early this morning. We have a jam-packed schedule. We have breakfast with some excellent local coffee. Being seven hours behind home has the annoying side effect that when you wake up your smartphone is an inferno of notifications. Old Europe has been awake for a while and you have to chase it. While we are sipping the dark liquid from the cup, still a bit sleepy, the owner of the hostel approaches us. He is an early riser too. He says he needs to talk to us for a moment.
Apparently we’ve given him something to think about in the past few days. He realized that this Bitcoin legal tender thing in El Salvador cannot be underestimated and that it is definitely not a passing fad. It all happened so fast that hardly any of them had the time to understand it and delve into it. But he’s an entrepreneur and every opportunity must be seized. He realizes that. Plus, he always says, there are things I’ve talked to him about in the last few days that have intrigued him. They’ve caught his attention. The question of financial freedom, the store of value, absolute scarcity, determined issuance. All seeds that I planted in his noggin and apparently they sprouted. Very well.
He asks me if I would be so kind as to talk about it better and in front of a wider audience. He would like to invite some of his friends, other entrepreneurs and freelancers. It will be an educational dinner, where my skills will be the main course. I’m very happy about that and I accept willingly. That’s what I’m here for, after all.
The morning flies by in a flash, as it always does when you have many things to do. In no time it’s one o’clock and we realize it by our stomachs growling. We decided to go to the usual popular comador in the city center. The one we like so much and of which we have often spoken. It’s just a few minutes away and it will do us good to stretch our legs a bit. We arrive and there are few people. Much better that way. It’s a kind of buffet. The dishes are on display behind a glass case and a lady, always very kind, makes the plates and puts them on a tray. There is always plenty of choice and the smell is really inviting. We arrive with our trays at the checkout, ready to pay. Waiting for us is the usual gentleman. By now we know each other well. We have spoken several times. He knows we are the Bitcoin people, that was the topic of our many discussions, back in the days when Chivo was always throwing a tantrum. And in fact he’s waiting for us with the smartphone already in his hand.
This time, however, something is different. We sense it clearly as we approach. He’s waiting for us, he’s staring at us and has a giant smile on his face. We greet him, he greets us. He quickly makes the count of what is on our trays. Two full lunches, four dollars and ninety cents. At the moment of showing us his device his chest swells, and to our amazement we realize that he is not showing us the usual QR. He has downloaded Muun. We give him a big party and congratulate him on his choice. He asks us for help to understand how it works, even if he says he has an intuition and that it seems very simple. We help him make his first real bitcoin transaction. It’s instantaneous. A true technological marvel. He looks at his balance all smug and we couldn’t be more pleased. We enjoy our lunch much better.
This may be silly maybe. But we feel that we have been given meaning here in El Salvador by things like this. If this person hadn’t met us, maybe he never would have been intrigued, never would have delved deeper. He wouldn’t have had a chance to understand how Chivo is a dangerous cancer and how he denies every philosophical principle of Bitcoin. If he didn’t have two freedom nuts at lunch determined to use only bitcoins to pay his bill, maybe this desire of his for emancipation would have remained locked in a drawer. We’re really glad.
Whether it was just to sow a seed, whether it was just to change the trajectory of a life, it all made sense. And it was right to do it. We know that today. We have been proven right. Today our reward has come.