Dienstag, 24. März 2020

My Trip to LA in the Corona era - Part 7 - Alejandro

Day 7+8


And now who is Alejandro Patino? And what do I have to do with him?

Alejandro is a philanthropist - a person who is kind to people. A friend of his once said. You couldn't describe it better. He is an American actor. But I don't want to go into much detail about his career here. You can read about this in Wikipedia at . I want to describe the person Alejandro.

Everything Alejandro does, he does passionately. He danced when he was young. I saw a ballet performance of him. He moved elegantly with infinite grace. Since I have seen his family dance, I know - the Patinos have dancing in their blood. Alejandro also sings very well and loves to sing. He also plays guitar.

He loves social media. No, he not only loves it, he lives in it. He is omnipresent on Facebook and Instagram; Twitter is only needed for his political messages. He campaigns for the indigenous people, for the workers, for the unions, for his friends who are currently promoting a project. He posts funny, strange, serious or sad things. He often greets his friends personally on Facebook when he sees that they are online. «Good morning! How are you doing?» He is friends with the whole world. Also with my mother, my sister, my niece, my husband. He loves making friends!

As actor, I think he's great. He speaks with his face. What others need several sentences for, he does it with a single facial expression. I am convinced that the reason why he never made the big acting breakthrough was not because of his acting qualities. It was his looks, in my opinion. Alejandro has a typical Mexican face. He is the prototype of a Mexican. Of course, this greatly reduces the range of roles. He can only play the Mexican! And to be honest, such roles are often quite stereotypical.

Alejandro was very lucky when he got the leading role in «Papi Chulo». He also played a Mexican there, but this role was by no means a stereotype. He played Ernesto, a Mexican day laborer who waited daily for temporary jobs in front of a hardware store. One day Sean, a famous LA weather man, took him away. He should paint his terrace. Although Ernesto did not speak English and Sean only spoke a few words of Spanish, friendship soon developed between the two dissimilar men. That was the perfect role for Alejandro! Because he couldn't talk much, he had to show his feelings and thoughts with the expression on his face. And that is his strength! I think the film is great! Also because of the performance of Alejandro.

The role of Sean was played by Matt Bomer, who is known from series such as «White Collar» and «The Last Tycoon», as well as from the film «Magic Mike». At that time, I was a big fan of Matt Bomer. I followed everything about him and already had some contacts with the other fans, among others with his probably biggest fan in the world, Patricia from Vienna. We met in New York when Matt played on the Broadway. We had a very good time together and decided to travel together again when Matt has a public appearance.

We soon heard that he had got a role in a film called «Papi Chulo», together with Alejandro Patino, an American actor with Mexican roots. Because Matt Bomer had 600,000 followers on Twitter, it was almost impossible to be noticed by him. It was all the easier to get in touch with Alejandro Patino. He only had 800 followers and was still dependent on support from the fans. We soon became friends on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook. I admit it, in the beginning it was pure calculation. We hoped to get closer to Matt through Alejandro when we travel to the premiere. But the longer we communicated via social media, the more we liked not only the actor Alejandro, but also the person. When it became known that «Papi Chulo» would be shown at a festival in London, Patricia and I started planning our trip. We asked Alejandro if he would have a drink with us in London and he agreed. Man, we were proud! We had an appointment with a Hollywood actor! One who even knew Matt very well. He became a bridge between us and Matt.

On the day of the premiere, several hundred fans were waiting for the actors in front of the cinema. Most were waiting for Matt Bomer. Patricia and I were also looking for Alejandro. Suddenly he came across the square on foot. He was not really noticed, in contrast to Matt, who could not save himself from fans. He recognized us immediately.

«Ah, you are Patricia! And you Katia!» He cried with delight.

We took photos and exchanged a few words. In the meantime, the other «Papi Chulo» fans have also discovered him and it started with selfies and autographs.

«I'll see you after the cinema,» he said to us before we headed towards Matt, who was just walking across the square. «Wait here. I'll pick you up. «

I wasn't sure until the end if he really came. But he came. He hugged me and Patricia and walked with us through the entire fan base, which was still tumbling on the square. Eva, another fan of Matt from Holland, who came to London with us, was just gone. Because we didn't know where she was, we went without her. Alejandro was not alone. He had Donald with him, a friend he knew from LA and who now lived in London.

«So girls,» Alejandro asked us. «Where do you want to go?»

«I don't know,» I replied. «Are you hungry? Or are we just going to have a drink? »

«I want to eat something,» he said.

We were just walking past a large bar. There seemed to be a lot going on there.

«Shall we go in here?» He said.

«OK. Why not?»

Security stopped us at the door.

«To the Papi Chulo Party,» Alejandro said to the man. He let us through - all four.

Alejandro went ahead, then Donald and at the end Patricia and I.

«Did you hear that?» I whispered in Patricia's ear. «He takes us to the Papi Chulo Party!»

Our wildest dream came true! We'll be at the after party of our film. Together with Matt and Alejandro, the main actors. We could hardly believe our luck. When we got to the first floor, we immediately saw Matt. He was deep in conversation with someone. We sat down at a table nearby. Alejandro brought us food and drink. When we all had something in hand, he sat between me and Patricia and looked at us.

«Now, here you have your Matt!» He said with a laugh and pointed to Matt. «I know you have an appointment with me just because of him.»

«That is certainly not why!» We protested halfheartedly.

«No?» He laughed impishly. «And if it were, I wouldn't have a problem with it.»

That eased the mood. We suddenly saw Alejandro with different eyes. He assumed that we wanted to contact Matt through him and still went to the party with us! What a nice person! After a while Donald and Alejandro suddenly left. We saw them take pictures with Matt.

«We can't go to Matt now», I said to Patricia quickly before they came back. «We came with Alejandro. We have to prove to him that we didn't just meet with him about Matt. »

So it was. We laughed, took photos and had a lot of fun with Alejandro. Even without Matt. «What do you mean», Patricia suddenly said to Alejandro. «Is there any way we can take a picture with Matt?»

«Of course!» Said Alejandro and looked around for Matt. We saw Simon, Matt's husband, come and say something to Matt. They soon set off. When they passed us Alejandro called his name, but he was in a hurry and didn't hear him. A little later, we also set off.

«It's a shame that we couldn't really speak inside», I said when it got a little quieter outside. It was very loud in the bar.

«If you like, we can meet for breakfast tomorrow», said Alejandro.

Of course, we wanted that!

«I'll pick you up», he said. «Here is my phone number. Call me when you're ready. »

We exchanged the phone number and said goodbye. We could hardly believe our luck on the way to the hotel. We had achieved something that no Matt Bomer fan will ever achieve. We were at the same party with him! And we had the phone number of Alejandro, a Hollywood actor. He'll pick us up at our hotel tomorrow. That was incredible. We felt a deep gratitude to Alejandro. I think for me our friendship started that evening.

But the next morning we got a text message that he had an appointment right after breakfast and unfortunately couldn't come. But in the evening after the show, we could go out for dinner if we have time.

Of course, we had time!

In the evening we sat in the front row in the cinema. After the film, Matt, Alejandro, the director, the producer and the organizer came on stage. They were only a few meters away from us. I took countless photos while answering questions from fans. When they went outside afterwards, Alejandro suddenly came up to me. He took my hand with his and apologized that he had to cancel in the morning. He had an appointment now but we should go somewhere. He will come later. The whole cinema was watching us. Man i was proud!

We spent a wonderful evening together. The third in the group, Eva, was there this time. We went to eat Mexican food. Alejandro as a Mexican knew what and how to order. We laughed much. I always wanted to couple Eva, who is single, with Alejandro. At some point during the evening, the status «fans» was officially converted into «friends». We said goodbye very warmly. We'll see each other soon, it was agreed. When «Papi Chulo» comes to Dublin.

In February 2019 the time had come. «Papi Chulo» came to Dublin. Patricia and I reserved a room in the same hotel as Alejandro. We spent most of the time together. If Alejandro had no appointments, he was with us. Friendship grew. Although he was mostly warned not to get involved with fans, he stood by us. He even took us in the car after the cinema screening, which was available to him, including the chauffeur. On the last day we had breakfast together in our hotel and then everyone went their own way: Patricia flew back to Vienna, Alejandro to Glasgow and I to Edinburgh.

Alejandro contacted me just a day later. He would come to Edinburgh with Donald and Michael, a friend from America. If I want to spend the day with them. We spent a very nice day together. Now I could definitely say that I have a friend in Hollywood. Michael and Donald were also very nice. What I particularly liked about Alejandro was that he never crossed the line. No matter in which direction. He was always polite, friendly, funny. At some point his colleagues asked him what relationship Alejandro and I had.

«We are friends», he replied. «Just friends? » Asked Michael. «How is that possible? »

«First of all, Katia is married. Secondly, we don't want to destroy the good friendship we have. »

I was glad that he saw it that way too. But I also realized that most people will not understand this kind of friendship. Because we are man and woman. But I see a friend in Alejandro, brother. Ever since I met his family, all the more. They are so nice people! Something similar to our people from the Balkans. I will never forget that he took me and Patricia to the «Papi Chulo» party. He opened a door for us that would otherwise never have opened for us. We have experienced something that you will never forget. He had always stood by us, even after being warned of the fans. So I really wanted to go to his birthday. I just wanted to say thank you. Thank you for everything! Thanks for the friendship. It's a shame that Patricia had to cancel her flight because of the Corona Virus. It's a shame that I had to leave so quickly. Alejandro, Patricia and I would have a lot of fun together again!


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