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    I open the book and see the A for Aitor, for Actor, for Artist. And I remember our first years, stammering —me more; he was better prepared; he was born as an actor— our first words spoken on stage. I turn the page and the B reminds me for Beastly, Brilliant, Brimming pure energy, so overwhelming that soon our horizons grew small for him and he left us. With the C, we take a really long journey together because we meet again over the years and we are Companions, Colleagues, Co-directors, Co-scriptwriters, we know how to get on together, we two, both so different. I move on to D and I think of Aitor Drawer, pen in hand (always a pen), drawing incredible characters all over tablecloths, paper napkins, scripts or bills. The indelible memory of a story-board drawn with a pen in great detail on a 15m-long piece of paper: excessive, gifted, beautiful, impracticable, admirable… And I don’t want to leave the D without saying Dandy, just because… I move on to E, which reminds of that Exuberant and Extreme human being, but E is followed by F, his other side: the Fragile man. Fragile and Fierce at the same time. Fierce and Fragile. The G conjures up his physical robustness, he is a Great big guy, and his uncontainable Goofy humour leading me directly to the H for Hilarious. But I’m not leaving this evasive, almost invisible letter without mentioning a word that would have been invented for him if it hadn’t already existed: Hurricane. The force of this pushes me along to the I for Irascible, but I turn around in my memories to see the other side of that: the Ingenuous human being. For the J, I can only remember Joy and laughter haha the hundreds haha thousands of times hahaha sorry, I can’t stop hahaha… I ignore the K because I don’t want to talk of the excess Kilos around his waistline or the few Ks missing from his wallet, and I quickly pass the L, not due to the lack of words, because Lucid, Learned and Large would be fitting, but because I want to reach the M for Mazo–with a surname like that (which means mallet in Spanish), there’s not much else to say. And I can use the three letters M, N and P all at once to remember our first film together as directors, La Máquina de Pintar Nubes (The Cloud Painting Machine), a tale that is the story of our lives. I don’t need anything from the Q except maybe a Question: How are you? Are you happy on the other side? And I skip quickly past the R for Red and for Rabid, and I pass to the S for Sanguine, to reach T for Torito Bravo, and I stay here a while remembering that play that united us forever, blood of our blood, sweat of our sweat, because I believe I will always remember you in that black bullfighter costume with the false belly, that hair band with two bent, old horns and those two balls in a sock bag hanging between your legs. It might seem a grotesque figure to anyone who wasn’t lucky enough to see the grandeur and dignity of that bull-man: Percatao. I go to the U to state the obvious: that Aitor is Unique, and for W, I’ll keep Wine, his —our— favourite drug, our consumption of which was at times outrageous and, when it did not lead us to complete and utter confusion, it opened doors to a strange and happy lucidity. With the X, I would delete —if I could— his last day: we still had so many things to do. I’ll link the Spanish copulative Y to the Z to ask him again for the last time: Zoriontsuak al zarete mugaz bestaldeko biztanleak? (Are you happy on the other side?)

    Patxo Tellería
    Actor, Film director