Arle and Frankie are the comic team of El Sembrador. They are inseparable best friends who have fun no matter what they are doing. Frankie plays the often dim-witted Robin to Arle's absurd Batman and together they fight to rid the campus of poor dispositions, melancholy and boredom.
Arle is clearly the leader and he is no fool. He is extremely intelligent, but he hides it well. He works hard at being engaging, silly and lovable. He's the kind of charismatic person who can charm you with his wit and pizazz while stealing your wife and wallet at the same time. His shenanigans can border on manipulative at times, but I find them mostly harmless and entertaining. His hair is fashioned into either an outrageous mohawk or cut short and molded into tiny spikes all over his head....seriously, they might draw blood when you touch them. Arle came to El Sembrador through another project for street kids in Tegucigalpa. It's easy to see that his street-savvy temperment is the result of the life he's led. I had lived here almost four months before he let on that he spoke quite a bit of English. He was perfectly content to watch me struggle in my communication with him until it was to his advantage....or maybe when it was most funny...to suddenly answer my daily "¿Como esta?" with perfectly enunciated English. We've nicknamed him the Computer Hacker for his pretty advanced computer skills, which is a rare talent here. It doesn't really surprise me, though. Arle is always ready for anything and he manages even his most crazy antic with style.
If Arle is the sophisticated rock star, then Frankie (Gabriel Francisco) is the awkward fan club president. He's the wacky sidekick who can't quite be taken seriously hard as he may try. He's a giddy kid that giggles at everything. His attempts to be suave are more goofy than cool and more bumbling than graceful. Don't get me wrong, Frankie is not stupid. He just lacks that street-smarts of his more-worldly amigo. Despite this, he is determined to be ladies' man. And he's somewhat successful with the chicas. I'm not sure how, but he somehow manages to attract them with a little sappy poetry and his girly giggle. He tries to hard to learn new English phrases and words, but they sound like a cartoon character and he always manages to say them at the most inappropriate times. But he is so funny and energetic. And he knows it. He delights in making other people laugh.
The Dynamic Duo feed off eachother. It's such a joy to see such true kindred spirits. I know how much I am going to miss the boys when we leave, but I sometimes forget that they have forged life-long friendships with eachother too. They may live in the same country, but their lives are miles apart. I try to imagine what Arle's life will be like after El Sembrador and what Frankie will do with himself, but somehow I just can't envision them separately. I'll never forget the scene they made a few weeks ago. It was time for the boys to leave on vacation and Arle climbed on the bus for a ride into town while Frankie waited behind for his family to arrive. Arle leaned out the bus window while Frankie stared longingly up at him from below. They both looked so sad at the prospect of spending a week apart that it made me laugh out loud. Their exploits at El Sembrador have brought a little more merriment into our lives and there have been so many days that I have been grateful for their tomfoolery.
|Arle in his favorite shirt....Caleb?|
|Wow, that's some awesome big hair!|
Arle's best moves....of course he's the only one who can hear the music...
|Frankie....trying his hardest to be cool.|
|Yes, this is the typical Frankie expression.|
|One of Frankie's more awkward moments|
|The Dynamic Duo - Arle and Frankie|
|I have no idea what those hand symbols mean...and neither do they.|
|Frankie and Arle are fond of taking photos of themselves....a lot of photos.|
|Awwww.....they are so cute when they are sleeping.|