Episode 15

I am here drinking a blackberry juice while I write this summary of Ecomoda’s episode #15. And what an episode!! It was fantastic, marvelous, ingenious, etc, etc. Nor can I fail to mention that Doctor Armando Mendoza is more adorable than ever…

The scenes they cut out explain very clearly why Gabriela acted so strangely when she saw Armando arrive in Ecomoda in the morning… And also Armando and Betty’s comments about how “tired” they are from the night before…

Gabriela dreams about Armando… (this was only shown in Spain)

Armando : Hello, Gabriela.

Gabriela: What’s up, Armando? How are you? Do you want a tequila? Jorge, do me a favor - bring two tequilas to me at the table, ok?

Armando: Gabriela. I have been very worried about you lately. Tell me what’s going on with you.

Gabriela: I feel very alone. I feel completely alone, and I really don’t know why I’m telling you this. It must be because I don’t… I don’t have anyone at all to tell, do you think? [Beth: excuse me - no-one to tell?? what about Kenneth? what about your friends in Mexico? your family? you haven’t heard of telephones..? the internet…? mail…?? oh, yeah, right. dream. but still…]

Armando: Well… that’s what friends are for, right? That’s why I’m here - because after all, we’re friends.

Armando: Why don’t we have a toast, Gabriela? Let’s drink to friendship, hmmmmm?

Gabriela: Why don’t we drink to the two of us?

Armando: Cheers.

Gabriela: Cheers.

Armando : Tell me…. just what can I do to get rid of… depression?

Gabriela: Well, if I’m telling you I feel alone it’s because I need someone.

Armando: “Someone?” Like who?

Betty: Ay, noooooo!!!!!


It’s yours, my love.

Betty: It’s yours.

Armando : Oh yes?

Armando: Hmmmmm. I’m good.

Betty: Well done, my love.

Armando : Where is that alarm clock my love? Where did we put it?

Betty : On the bookshelves.

Armando: You go.

Betty: I did it yesterday. You go.

Armando: Ay!!!! I hurt myself. Ahhh!!!

Armando: It’s 8:30. My love, it’s 8:30. At 9 the Fashion Group people will arrive at Ecomoda. We’ve got to get going. Wake up! Wake up!

Armando: No… What are you doing? No, no, no, no. C’mon, my love, c’mon - let’s go, let’s go, let’s go! Hey, hey, hey - to the showers! Hey, hey, here we go…!

Armando:- Let’s go, let’s go!

Here is where the episode in the United States started…

It is morning at Ecomoda and we see Wilson in front of the company’s main door. Right away we enter and see the Cartel get off the elevator. Natasha is already at her desk, all proper, speaking in English with someone on the phone. They are all surprised to see her there so early. She tells them she’s been there since 7am because it’s very important to get to the office before the bosses do. She greets everyone with kisses [Merci: what a hypocrite she is!]… Just then Hugo arrives [Merci: Hugo was incredibly funny today] with his little doggie, wearing a kind of turban on his head… [Beth: it’s more like a long gypsy-style head scarf kind of thing]. He tells the Cartel to get to work NOW! - they look like pre-Colombian mummies. He tells Inesita they have to get started on a lot of work, adding that he’s bought a new apartment -500 meters, a duplex, with 120 meters of terrace, a Jacuzzi for two and a view of the city- what would Bogotá be without him! What’s more, it has a studio with a skylight and a Baccarat lamp so he can make his marvelous creations. The only thing missing is a boyfriend… As he says this, the elevator doors open and Kenneth gets off. Hugo’s reaction (in English): “The sky must be broken because the angels are falling down!” Kenneth can’t believe his ears and asks Hugo (also in English), “Are you for real?” Kenneth greets Natasha and asks her if he has any messages. She tells him he got a fax from Fashion Group’s main office, which she left in his office. Kenneth heads there and Huguito tells him to go with God. Poor Kenneth, his office is near Hugo’s workshop (which makes Hugo very pleased). Hugo appears at Kenneth’s office and tells him “Hi, Kenneth,” and he replies “Hi, Hugo.” Hugo reminds him he has to greet him every morning, but not to worry - he’s going to protect him, and he’s at his service. Then he asks Kenneth how he’s doing, how he likes Bogotá, if they’re treating him well, who he lives with… Kenneth replies well, that Bogotá is marvelous, and he lives alone. Hugo asks if he’s single and gets the answer that Kenneth is divorced. Hugo follows this up with the question (in English), “Are you tired of women?” but Kenneth tells him no. Hugo relates that for his part he has grown bored with women. Kenneth has one of those little basketballs and Hugo suggests they play. Kenneth tosses it to him and Hugo sinks a basket. [Merci: Hole in one!]

Sofía tells Aura María to give Kenneth a hand before Hugo takes it from him. We see Freddy arrive and listen in on the conversation. Aura María states there isn’t anything between her and Kenneth. Sandra remarks that all men, until proven to the contrary, are gay. Freddy cannot believe Aura María isn’t defending his virility, but she’s acting like she’s not very impressed. Freddy wants to know what all the shouting was about, then… [when they were dating]. Aura María replies that he’s not man enough to walk to the altar. Freddy is very hurt that they doubt him so. The elevator doors open and Gabriela arrives with a “face of few friends.” She greets Natasha, who hands her a copy of the fax, which is apparently bad news. Natasha tells Gabriela that Kenneth wants to talk to her and then calls him to let him know Gabriela’s arrived. He says he’ll see them there [at Natasha’s desk] and runs into Inesita and Hugo en route to see Gabriela. Hugo whistles at him (like a “wolf whistle”) then tells Inesita she shouldn’t do such things!

The elevator opens again [Merci: that poor apparatus has been given a real workout today!] and we see the Mendoza-Pinzóns arrive, kissing very affectionately. They notice that all are looking at them and Betty suggests to Armando that they go to her office because they have things to discuss. They remark that Gabriela seems strange (she got a bit tense when she saw Armando) [Merci: but then again, who wouldn’t?]. Kenneth arrives and asks Gabriela if she’s already read the fax from the home office; she replies she has. They decide they have to talk with Armando and Betty. Kenneth then asks Gabriela if she’s ok and she says no, but gives the excuse that it’s because of the fax.

In Betty’s office, she tells Armando that she really needed one more hour of sleep, and remarks that he was very playful the night before. Armando says he thinks it was actually someone else who was so playful… They get very romantic and end up kissing on top of Betty’s desk. Kenneth and Gabriela open the door and catch them kissing. Gabriela’s face gets a look of strange shock. Betty and Armando try to dissimulate, Betty removes the lipstick that got on Armando, etc… They start discussing business and Kenneth and Gabriela explain to the Mendozas that they received a fax from their New York office questioning the shipping schedule for the new collection. Gabriela feels they need to discuss and revise the dates. They think they’re not going to be able to make the proposed goals… They decide to go to see Hugo to look at the collection. Gabriela continues acting very strangely.

They arrive at Hugo’s workshop and Hugo’s a total sweetie with Gabriela - according to him, she and Kenneth are an “optical delight.” He greets Armando and Betty using their titles (Doctor & Doctora) and asks if anyone called Room Service… They ask about the collection and he states it is turning out “de ututuy” [roughly, “da bomb” or “ooh la lah.."]. Armando insists they want to see it and Hugo says all in good time. Armando becomes exasperated and tells him they need to see the collection now! while Betty tells him, “Señor Lombardi, we would like to see the collection.” When Hugo asks Gabriela and Kenneth if they want to see it and they tell him yes, then he happily accedes. But he adds that things aren’t finished and he doesn’t like to show the sketches but rather that the clothing be modeled - he doesn’t like to show unfinished works. Armando tells him he is an unfinished man. Hugo asks Inesita to prepare one of the models of the collection with some lilac-colored shoes. Inesita gets out the shoes and shows Hugo they’re damaged. Jenny emerges and demonstrates where the sleeve is also torn. Armando is about to explode and starts looking around when he notices that Hugo’s little dog has been “dando banquete” [Beth: i’m not familiar w/this phrase, which translates literally as “giving banquet.” - given the circumstances, i’m going to guess this means she’s been indulging herself in chewing on the clothes & the shoes…]. At this, the shouting starts about how Armando doesn’t want animals at EcoModa. Hugo states that if that’s the case he (Armando) will have to leave the Executive floor… According to Hugo, Armando insults Bárbara (his dog) and he starts making noises similar to Betty. She decides it’s better if Armando deals with Hugo and leaves. Armando is all angry with Hugo, who wants to quit. Inesita reminds him he can’t because he has to pay for his apartment. Hugo states that his doggie does these things instinctively, not deliberately - she’s spontaneous. Then he tells them all to leave and he’ll call them when everything’s ready. Gabriela says “Armando,” and he asks her what’s up. She apologizes to him, but he doesn’t know why. Hugo berates Jenny for her comments about the dog damaging things and says she looks just like the dog. Kenneth and Armando head for production together…

Gabriela asks Bertha to give her a list of the personnel in production, Sofía to give her some data which Nicolás prepared in dollars, Aura María to give her a copy of the Fashion Group contract, and Sandra to giver her a report on exports. Then she heads for her office [Beth: ok, not that i think the Cartel are grossly overworked or anything, and perhaps offices in Colombia function differently, but in the office where i work, there would be all kinds of hell to pay if an executive started demanding stuff from other people’s assistants, and, let’s face it, the Cartel aren’t Gabriela’s assistants; they don’t even work for her company! there are Channels. you tell your assistant what you want, and s/he coordinates with the appropriate assistant or assistants -or- you tell the appropriate executive(s) and they instruct their assistants to get you the material you’ve requested. so, while the Cartel might undoubtedly do so for their own reasons (like being too busy not working at all), and i’m actually rather shocked to find myself potentially defending their actions, i’m not sure i can completely blame the Cartel if they didn’t get the stuff Gabriela’s demanded… however, i do blame them for not going to Betty or one of their other bosses to let her or him know Gabriela has requested this information…]. The Cartel, as usual, continue gossiping instead of working, and ask Sofía how things went with her husband. Sofía tells them that he made himself scarce and hasn’t called back. Natasha reminds them about the reports for Gabriela. They tell her to “relax,” they’re in chat mode…

Freddy arrives and Inesita gives him Hugo’s little dog to look after. He tells her he can’t because it’s not part of his job and what’s more, there’s no “chemistry” [between him and Bárbara - LOL!]. Aura María tells him there sure was chemistry between him and the woman from the other nights [implying they were dogs - again, LOL!]. He, offended, apologizes to Natasha for the “bolchie” spectacle being made by the members of the Cartel, and tells Aura María not to speak badly of his (women) friends - she doesn’t know them. They (his women friends) do appreciate the “national product” - referring to Aura María going after Kenneth in preference to himself. Sandra tells him to take himself and the dog off and obliges him to carry Bárbarita out [instead of walking her out on her leash].

Natasha answers the phone and tells her “associates” that Gabriela is asking for the reports. They again tell her to relax. Natasha, who can only be termed a major gossip and sower of discord, goes running to Gabriela’s office and very ingratiatingly serves her a coffee while telling her that the Cartel isn’t following her [Gabriela’s] orders. They’re very amiable and all, but what they like to do is gossip and not work. Gabriela tells her she cannot believe that kind of attitude, they’re risking their jobs since they don’t know the terms of the deal between Fashion Group and EcoModa. She thanks Natasha for the coffee and she [Natasha] contentedly returns to her desk.

Hugo asks Inesita what she did with Bárbara Chesai and she tells him his doggie is in very good hands… Outside we see Freddy emerge with said doggie and a man makes fun of him. Freddy hands the doggie over to Wilson (who for a change is eating a lollipop) and leaves her with him.

Natasha returns to her desk and tells Sandra that she and the rest of the Cartel are going to be fired. Sandra doesn’t understand why and tells the rest. Natahsa says that Gabriela is furious because they haven’t given her the reports. Aura María asks who Gabriela thinks she is to be giving orders. Sofía states she’s out of her mind [Gabriela is]… that the one Gabriela can talk to like that is Natasha and not the rest of them. They’re all very annoyed. Betty comes out of her office and asks Aura María where Armando is; she’s told he’s with Kenneth in production. Betty states that Lombardi is driving her crazy. Then she asks what’s wrong with them [the Cartel] and they explain about what Natasha told them Gabriela was going to do. Betty gets angry and exclaims that that sort of decision is made by the President’s office and tells Natasha to tell Gabriela so. Without wasting any time, Natasha heads for Gabriela’s office. There she relates a rather slanted version of the story while offering Gabriela some cookies - how it pains her greatly but the members of the Cartel said they would do the reports later, not when Gabriela wants them. What’s more, she recounts what Betty supposedly said. Gabriela is about to explode - she can’t understand what is going on with that company. She states she shouldn’t have to plead with the employees to do their jobs. She leaves her office with purse in hand as if leaving for the day and tells the members of the Cartel that she doesn’t have to put up with their inefficiency and haughtiness, that it’s obvious that the Fashion Group made a mistake doing a deal with EcoModa. Betty, who has joined the conversation, tells her that no one there works under force or threats. Gabriela retorts that she thought the contract specified that EcoModa was going to back them up. Then she tells Natasha she’s going to the hotel and to pack up her office and send her her things. And to tell Kenneth they’re leaving. The elevator door opens and Freddy appears - Gabriela gets even angrier just seeing him. They all remark that Gabriela’s lost it. Natasha suddenly realizes that she’s out of a job and tells the Cartel it’s all their fault; she runs away crying [Merci: crying crocodile tears…] toward the restroom.

Natasha comes out of the restroom and is still going on with the same old story. Sandra asks her why she’s blaming them. Natasha tells them that they started saying all those things about Gabriela. Aura María points out that they didn’t say anything to Gabriela. Then they realize that Natasha was the one who told on them to Gabriela; she defends herself by saying that Gabriela is her boss and has a right to know everything. The Cartel retorts that it’s her own fault! At this point, Kenneth and Armando arrive and Natasha, still crying, gives Kenneth the message Gabriela left for him and begs his pardon for telling him in Spanish… Armando and Kenneth head for the president’s office to speak to Betty.

Armando opens the door and says “Hello, my love” to Betty. He asks her if she fought with Gabriela and she replies that Gabriela started to speak in a very bad way with the employees, she [Betty] couldn’t stand it any more. She adds that Gabriela considers the agreement over. Kenneth interjects, yes, it is. Armando asks Betty to tell him everything that happened…

Outside, Wilson is trying to find Hugo’s doggie, who has disappeared. Freddy cannot believe this has happened to him. Mariana, who is also looking for Bárbara, announces that this is total stress. How will they face Hugo, a crazed fury, without the dog? In Betty’s office, Armando cannot believe what’s happened and he asks Kenneth if Gabriela has that type of authorization. Kenneth tells him yes. Armando says that Kenneth has to speak with Gabriela and convince her [to change her mind]. Kenneth replies he will try and is just leaving when Aura María and Bertha come in. They explain to Betty and Armando what really happened and what Natasha did - give misinformation to Gabriela.

Freddy arrives at Sandra’s desk and asks her to call a “911” because of the missing doggie. Just then Hugo arrives and asks him what he’s doing with Bárbara’s leash but no Bárbara. Freddy tells him he’s going to break it to him gently. Hugo again asks where his dog is and Freddy replies, who knows? They’re investigating, the doggie is very restless and she was playing at Hide-and-Seek. Hugo cries, “My doggie got lost!” And to round things off, he faints

Aura María tells Betty that since she’s in such a bad mood, she misunderstood the whole mess with Gabriela. Bertha says the problem is it’s worse to have gossip badly related, as Natasha did, than the bald truth. Somewhat exasperated, Betty tells them well, no, thanks! and they leave. Betty tells Armando that she’s very sorry, but his friend Hugo has put her in a really bad mood. Kenneth returns and tells them Gabriela doesn’t want to come back - she’s out of control. Betty asks if she should call Gabriela but Kenneth says he thinks the only person she’d talk to is Armando, which surprises Armando… Betty tells him to call her.

Wilson, Mariana and Freddy arrive on the second floor and tell Hugo that his doggie turned up - the poor thing is all rumpled [Beth: note, Bárbara is one of those little dogs with really long fur that looks like a nice mop; Hugo dresses her up with a little bow on the top of her head…] and Hugo tells them to turn her around - he thinks he’s looking at her tail, not her head! They tell him Bárbara was with a “boyfriend,” a really cute little dog (tho it’s obviously a mutt; they have it there with them, wearing a make-shift halter/leash made of string)… Hugo can’t believe that Bárbara could’ve done such a thing. Freddy tells him that, judging by the contented look on her face when they found her, Hugo’s going to be a “grandfather…” Hugo tells them they’re a bunch of plebeians and to take their new pet (the mutt) and get out!

We see Gabriela arrive at a bar and ask the bartender, Jorge, to serve her a tequila. She sits down and imagines she is kissing Armando [Merci: ! And what a kiss, ladies and gentlemen…]. Just then Armando arrives and greets her. He asks her what she’s drinking. She tells him tequila and orders two more. He remarks that she looks a bit off to him and he’s worried about her disagreement with Betty. She tells him it was something silly and that he’s right, nothing happened. But she adds that she’s had a really rough day. He asks her why, and she replies that it’s personal. Armando tells her that he thought they’d established a good friendship, he’s all ears and is willing to listen if she wants to tell him what’s wrong. They toast each other… She tells him that she feels very alone, that since arriving in Bogotá she hasn’t met absolutely anyone. She hasn’t begun any friendships in EcoModa, except with him [Beth: yes, but she’s been there all of what? a few days?? puh-leeze!!]. He points out that he’s there. She asks him if he’s considering helping her solve her problem with being alone, only then she quickly tells him not to worry about it. But, she admits, last night she had a dream which worried her a great deal - a dream about him. Armando comments that it must’ve been a nightmare… She confesses that she really likes him a lot [Merci: Good grief, this woman cuts right to the chase], but she also respects Betty and their daughter, and this is what makes her crazy, disturbed. Armando tells her she’s taken him by surprise with this. He adds that a few years ago he would’ve gone crazy about her, would’ve done anything to be with her. But his life changed. He’s been happily married for two years [Merci: Armando is DIVINE!], every day is like a honeymoon. And he hopes it will be that way until the end of their days. He is infinitely in love with his wife and daughter, he sees lights through their eyes [Merci: couldn’t you just die…?]. Gabriela tells him she only wanted to speak honestly and frankly with him. And she tells him not to worry, she isn’t going to get between him and Betty [Beth: …except that she’s just tried to…!]. She’s enchanted by what he has and admires and respects him. She tells him “no hard feelings” (in English). What’s more, there won’t be any reprisals and the deal with Fashion Group will continue. Armando thanks her and tells her he wants to continue being her friend, and they toast again - Cheers!

There were no advances for next week’s show.

Beth: ok, i completely approve of Armando’s behaviour, but i have a serious problem with Gabriela’s. and actually, not really so much with her making a play for Armando -tho i do think that is WRONG- but for her behaviour beforehand. she’s had an erotic dream about Armando, so she arrives at EM in a bad mood (presumably because she knows she can’t have him) which is apparently aggravated by receiving bad news from the home office; gives orders to other people’s assistants (ok, yes, that’s still bugging me) then -admittedly with some justification, altho i still maintain she was out of line- gets mad when they don’t do what she wants and retaliates by saying she’s going to have them all fired without even consulting the people who actually are their bosses; she gets even more angry when their main boss -with reason- points out that she’s out of line. still without explaining anything, and knowing she has the power to do so, Gabriela announces that the deal is off and storms out in a huff, refusing to talk to anyone, listen to anyone, or to change her mind. in other words: because she’s lonely, has apparently fallen instantly in love with a man she knows she can’t have, and had a completely unnecessary disagreement with that man’s wife that she herself provoked, Gabriela is perfectly willing to screw up a major business deal that will affect no only herself but dozens if not hundreds of people in at least two countries. in the beginning i was inclined to like her - she was presented as an intelligent and businesslike woman who is not inclined to take bull from anyone, or let people get away with much (witness how often she insisted to Armando that he tell Betty the truth about what happened with Mario and the car). and now we get this?!? i’m very disappointed…