Episode 16

Merci: This program gets BETTER every day! Last night’s episode was fantastic…

We see Betty and Armando walking along a street in Bogotá - Armando carrying two packages and Betty pushing Camila’s stroller. Armando turns to look at a very attractive woman; the woman looks back at him and recognizes him. She greets him very affectionately - she’s a model who has a modeling agency and wants to invite him to an anniversary party for the agency. Armando feels uncomfortable with the invitation and in all his confusion fails to introduce Betty. He tells the model he can’t go, shows her he’s with his little daughter (who is asleep in her stroller) and finally remembers to present Betty to the woman, first calling her the “First Monster” and then “my wife, Betty.” Betty greets the woman and tells her that although she cannot go (as soon as she’d realized Armando was married, the model had quickly invited Betty to the anniversary as well), of course Armando can. They make their good-byes. Armando is still somewhat nervous and he asks Betty if they can go get a drink…

The following scene was not seen in the United States… (thanks to SILVIA R. from Spain for the photos.)

“Ok, my love, you’re nuts, you know? You’re sending me, eh…? to this models’ party thing, when she invited both of us?”

“Ay, my love, I’m not a fool. Your friend thought you were single… ‘Armando, my dearest, it’s delicious to see you…'”

“But it’s Maria Fernanda Navia! She was Miss Bogotá - she’s a very good model!”

“Veeerrrrryyyyy good”

“And she’s not my friend… Waiter, two cappuccinos, please.”

“Yes, love, if I had accepted Miss Bogotá’s invitation, she would have fainted.”

“Yes, but so what? Instead you’ve gotten me stuck up to my neck with this event!”

“My love, you can go.”

“What?? -I?? I go there, my love? You’re saying that Armandito is going to go, all by himself, to a models’ party? No, please… I love you, my love, [but]let’s not lie to ourselves. I would never go anywhere without you, and I’m not going to go there by myself.”

“Well, if you don’t want to go…”

“No, no. No, no. Let’s be clear. Are you telling me that you would let me go to a party with the top models in Colombia?

“What’s this about my “letting” you go? My love, you’re my husband, not my prisoner! Of course you can go - it’s another thing if you don’t want to.”

“Are you certain this won’t bother you? Are you certain that it won’t upset you, that I am there by myself with so many beautiful women? Are you certain you won’t be, I dunno - jealous, hmmmm?”

“My love, I think we’ve discussed it enough, we have a lot of trust in each other, you’ve told me your secrets… you showed me the Oracle of the Goddesses, I’ve told you my past, you know it perfectly, and we have complete faith in each other, right?

“You know what? When you want to go out with your [girl]friends, or when you want to go out with a special friend or with a person -thanks very much!- or with someone I don’t know, whatever - when you feel the need to go out without my going along, I… I am going to support you 100%, my love!! Because this trust we have is the most marvelous in the world and I want to tell you that I love you, and that I am proud of you and that I am going to go to this precious event, and thank you very much, and “becho pa’ Armandito” [Beth: baby-talk for “beso para Armandito” - a kiss for Armandito - ]… “becho…” Aaaaayyyy.”

“Ay my love, but with this busy social life of mine, all the dates I have…”

“Ay, don’t say that…! Let’s see… Who is the model wife for this model husband? Well?? Tell me!”

At Ecomoda we see all the members of the Cartel together in their daily gossip session, even Mariana who apparently is able to answer the phones at Reception by remote control. The elevator doors open and the two lovebirds emerge kissing as if they were superglued together. They aren’t even bothered that the full Cartel and Natasha are all right there [Merci: And what a pleasure it was to not have to listen to Natasha all night! A little break - how divine!]. Armando swears to Betty he will be home before 11:30pm. She tells him he has her permission to be out until midnight. She heads for her office and Armando for his, but not before saying “Good morning, ladies” to the Cartel and Natasha.

Mario is in Armando’s office, bragging about how he can go to the party that night while Armando won’t be able to. What a shame Armando will have to miss it!! Armando tells Mario he got an invitation… What does Mario think? Mario says that inviting Armando to the party is like inviting a prisoner on Death Row to leave his cell… Armando gives him another surprise by saying that he not only got an invitation, but he is going to go to the party. Mario cannot believe it! What, is Armando going to leave Betty [i.e., start divorce proceedings] that very afternoon? Is he going to give her a sleeping pill so she won’t notice [Armando’s leaving to go to the party]? Armando tells Mario he has permission to go because his wife trusts him. Mario replies that this is what’s called a conditional release for good conduct.

The Cartel is asking Betty if she’s going to let Armando go to the party. She tells them that Armando has behaved himself very well during these last two years and she has no reason to keep him locked up. What’s more - haven’t they noticed how affectionate Armando’s been towards her lately? Sandra tells her yes, and with that in mind she suggests that Betty fix her lipstick. Betty adds that she and Armando trust each other enough for these things. What’s more, since it’ll be Armando’s birthday the next day, she can get everything ready while he’s at the party - they’ll have a surprise party for him when he gets home. Sofía cannot believe Betty’s going to let Armando be with so many “240s” - they ask her what that is, and she replies that 90-60-90 [a/k/a 36-24-36 to those of us who still use inches] adds up to 240!

Armando tells Mario he has to be back home by midnight without fail. Mario starts calling him “dear Cinderella,” saying that at that hour he will return to being a miserable mouse. But Mario also thinks that this will give him the opportunity of going out with Armando three times that week - plus there’s no reason for him [Mario] to worry [about Betty spoiling their fun by going as well] because no-one would ever invite Betty anyway!! [Merci: you can imagine Armando’s reaction to such a commentary…] And, just as happened in Yo Soy Betty, la Fea, Mario continues to have the ability to look into the future… The elevator opens and we see Mariana escorting none other than our esteemed and well-remembered Frenchman, Michel Duanell. The Cartel and Natasha are all about to melt on seeing such a divine apparition. They welcome him, they look him over, they caress him with their eyes. They ask what he’s doing there and he tells them he’s in Bogotá for a few days and wanted to see if he could see Betty. Aura María goes to Betty’s office and tells her to guess who wants to see her. Betty replies that she’s not in for anyone. Aura María asks if she’s sure of that, and adds that the Love Of [Betty’s] Life is outside - Michel. Betty looks genuinely pleased and asks, what’s Michael doing here - what does he want? Aura María tells her he’s there to say hi. Betty reminds Aura María that the Love Of Her Life is named Armando Mendoza and he’s right in the office next door. Aura María replies that Michel might have been the Love Of Her Life if Armando hadn’t gotten in the middle of everything. Betty remarks that Armando will have a heart attack if he should find out that Michel is there. Aura María asks Why? didn’t Betty say they trust each other? Betty tells her not to be an idiot, and that she’ll see Michel. She asks how she looks and Aura María tells her she hasn’t been ugly for a long time. Betty sits down, gets out her compact, and touches up her makeup. Aura María remarks that Michel is even more gorgeous than ever…

The Radio Cartel reporters interroga- er, interview Michel about whether he has a girlfriend. He tells them no, he hasn’t had time since he has been working very hard. Mariana asks if he’s been with anyone since Betty and he tells her no. Then Aura María arrives with Betty, and Betty and Michel greet each other with a hug. Gabriela asks Natasha who Michel is and Natasha makes a gesture to say she doesn’t know. Betty says to Michel, “What a surprise!” She never guessed he was her visitor. He tells her he wasn’t sure she’d be willing to see him, but she tells him of course she would be. Michel wants to know if she will have lunch with him. Just then we hear Armando calling Sandra - she doesn’t pay any attention, and Armando’s voice gets closer and closer. [Merci: Ay, Armandito, what a surprise you’ll find] Betty asks Armando if he remembers Michel. Armando says yes, he remembers. Michel tells her he remembers Armando perfectly [Merci: This reminded me of the scene in BLF when Armando was in the President’s office taking Betty’s diary out of her purse and she came in with Michel and introduced them…]. Michel tells Armando he’s just passing through and Armando asks how he’s doing. Betty tells him that she and Armando got married and now they have a baby daughter. Michel congratulates them; Armando thanks him. Betty tells Armando that Michel invited her out to lunch. Armando isn’t terribly happy at this news and remarks that the Cartel ought to be invited too since they’re all just there doing nothing. Michel says that Armando is also invited. Armando replies that he can’t since he has to work. Armando tells Betty he’ll see her later, after lunch. He turns and bumps into Sandra, who came over to ask him what he wanted. Armando doesn’t even remember any more, but he covers by saying he needs a report right away! Michel and Betty head for her office. En route back to his own office, Armando runs into Mario, who asks if that guy is the “French nightmare.” Armando replies by warning Mario to leave him [Armando] alone, he’s not in the mood. Gabriela asks Armando to approve some documents and Armando, distracted, tells her they’re fine.

Another scene from Spain…

“Fine, but before we begin, who is that foreign-looking guy who’s in there?”

“He’s a French friend of Betty’s.”

“And why all the fuss?”

Gabriela: “Excuse me, I didn’t mean to intrude… Well, let’s review this.”

“Yes, let’s review it.”

“That guy almost took Betty away from me. Do you remember how I told you that it cost me a great deal of effort to win Betty?” [Beatríz: That piano music that is the instrumental version of BLF which they always put on for the serious or tender scenes starts playing in the background.] “About two years ago, Betty and I had some very serious problems and she decided to go to Cartagena to think… to think about things.” “And she met him there. And he ended up inviting her to live with him in Cartagena.”

“In other words, there was something… You mean, they… Did she fall in love with him as well?”

“No. No, no, thank God, I acted in time. And I didn’t allow it. You can’t imagine how it hurt me. It’s been a long time since I’ve heard anything about that man.”

“I guess you’re… it’s like you’re dying, right? Because that guy’s here.”

“Nnnnnnooooo. Dying, no. But then again, I’ve gotten past that - it’s something in the past. " “And for me he’s -what? or what? Ah? Because in any case I… I have a very, very strong relationship with Betty. Our marriage has been a two-year honeymoon. We love each other , we have a marvelous daughter who we adore, to put it very plainly, ok? To be very frank, Betty and I are way beyond the good and the bad, ok?”

“Yes, yes, yes of course; you can tell.”

“Yes, you can - right? Yes.”

Gabriela: “How nice.”


“Look here, there are some figures in pesos and others in dollars, but what I think is we should organize everything, so that our accounts are better, ok? [Beatríz: or something like that - I wasn’t paying much attention to this part.]

“Are you listening to me?”

“Yes, yes, I agree with everything you’re saying.”

Michel asks Betty if it’s ok their going out together since he remembers how jealous Armando used to be, and how he followed them [Michel & Betty] the last time he was there. Betty says everything is very different now, Armando is very calm [Merci: ha, ha, ha]. Betty tells him not to count on her taking a long lunch since she’d planned to use the time to take care of some errands for the party for Armando. Michel tells her they don’t have to go to lunch to talk - they can pick something up on the way [to do her errands].

Gabriela is speaking with Armando, who tells her that Nicolás should look over the documents as well. Betty and Michel come out of her office and he tells her he can borrow a car [Merci: remember how much it bothered Armando that Betty let Michel drive her car?]. She tells him she has a car. She greets Gabriela and tells Armando she’s going out to lunch. Aura María asks Betty where they’re going to eat and Betty lies, “Le Noir,” saying that she’s already taken care of the reservation. Armando wishes Michel “Bon appétit,” who replies in turn, “Merci.” Betty: My love, can we talk in the conference room for a moment?Armando: Of course…

Betty: Michel, would you wait a moment for me, please?

Michel: Yes, I’ll wait at the elevator….

Betty: Fine…

Gabriela (to Armando, who is not paying the least attention to the poor woman): I’ll be in Nicolás Mora’s office…

[in the conference room]

Betty: Ay, my love, I think that before I accepted Michel’s invitation to lunch, I should’ve checked with you, right?

Armando: No, my love, why should you do that? You can’t check with me about everything you’re going to do - that’s the last thing you need…. It’s fine, just fine that you’re going out [to lunch]…

Betty: Ay, “monstri” [corruption of “Monster” - one of their pet names for each other], it’s just that you seem to be a bit strange, and I know you can’t be too happy that Michel’s turned up, much less that he’s taking me out to lunch. But since we made a “credibility pact”…

Armando: My love, just as you trust me, so do I trust you. I think it’s marvelous that you’re going out to lunch with Michel. I am completely confident that nothing will happen, happily! [Merci: poor Armando - he’s dying of jealousy…]

Betty: Are you sure?

Armando: Totally.

Betty: My love, I love you.

Armando: I love you…

Betty: Thanks, my love…

Armando: Go with God…

Betty: No, I’m going with Michel! [ha, ha!]

Armando: Do you want to take my car?

Betty: No, my love, thanks…

Armando: Have fun!

Betty leaves and the smile Armando has frozen on his face changes into an angry grimace. He stands and hits the pile of folders on the table, making them slide everywhere like a waterfall.

Outside the conference room, Betty tells Aura María she’s not actually going to any restaurant but rather to buy the things she’ll need for Armando’s birthday party. Back in his office, Armando is on the brink of a heart attack saying his wife is going to betray him with the Frenchman. Mario tells him to put the ogre to sleep. Armando calls Sandra and asks her to tell Freddy to come to his office. He signs a check and tells Mario he’s going to prove that Betty is telling the truth… Freddy enters and starts to remark that it’s just like old times, “The Three Friends.” Armando tells Freddy to go to Le Noir, interrupt Betty at her lunch there, and ask her to please countersign the check -she already knows what it is. Freddy says so that’s where Betty went with the Frenchman - gossip sure spreads fast in Ecomoda… Armando tells Freddy to be “quickie-quick” about it. Freddy replies that he will approach Betty’s table very respectfully and ask her to sign the check. Freddy and Mario are laughing; Armando isn’t [Beth: i’ve tried to figure out a way to translate this so i can make the joke here intelligible, but failed, so i’ll explain it: it’s a typical Gaitán play on the word i’ve translated as “quickie-quick.” the word Armando actually used was “rapidól.” now, “rápido” means fast or quickly, and although i wasn’t familiar with “rapidól,” based on the sound i figured it must be a Colombian brand name for something. i did a quick search on the web & found it is indeed a brand name, for an analgesic (pain killer) that “brings quick and efficient relief of pain, fever and dengue fever. It’s recommended for headaches and menstrual pain…” small wonder Mario, at least, was laughing!]. Freddy belatedly realizes that Armando’s not in the mood for jokes and says, “Just what is needed” [-NOT!]. Armando tells him to get his rear in gear. Mario tells Armando, “Well, Tiger, let’s be frank.” You’re doing this to reassure yourself and “I am the excuse.” Armando replies, “Ay, Lord! Why have you sent me this imbecile in the middle of this shipwreck?”

Scene shown only in Spain…

Betty: … and I got married in the church in the barrio where i was born, and got pregnant practically on my wedding night. It’s been two years now and they’ve been the best of my life. Truly, Michel, Armando has turned out to be an excellent husband and an unequalled father. Definitely.

Michel: And you’re happy?

Betty: Yes. Well… I have the usual little problems of the company, of work, the daily messes that are always there… But… but I cannot complain.

Michel: Good. That is what I wanted to know about you. I’m delighted to know you’re happy, that you’ve got a great guy, and that that great guy isn’t suffering for you any more and he understands that I’m a good friend of yours, someone who would never be capable of damaging something as marvelous as you have in your home.

Betty: I believe that I take your meaning, Michel…

Armando is seated at his desk clutching one of his famous “stress” bottles [whiskey!]. Freddy opens the door and hands him back the check. Armando can’t believe he’s brought it back without Betty’s signature! Freddy tells him the “doctora” never got to said restaurant with the aforementioned “monsieur.” Armando asks him if he searched for them, if he looked everywhere. Freddy replies he checked all the tables, all the bathrooms -just in case he even went to the kitchen and spoke to the “administrator” there- he knows Betty very well. They never arrived - not before he got there, nor during the time he was at the restaurant. He adds that he had to eat lunch there, but it was only an “executive lunch” and he ate it in the kitchen. Freddy approaches Mario and Armando and tells them that this will remain between just the three of them. Armando tells Freddy to get out! and tells Mario that it’s no wonder Betty was so evasive when asked where she was going to eat.

Armando angrily leaves his office with Mario right behind him, asking what he’s going to do and urging him not to ruin their plans for the evening, not to say anything to Betty until she has a chance to explain [about not being at Le Noir]. Mario even has the nerve [Beth: or more likely, he’s just that desperate…!] to say he trusts Betty!!

Betty and Michel arrive and she kisses Armando. Armando asks her how lunch at Le Noir was and she tells him Michel had the seafood and she the lasagna - everything was delicious. Then the icing on the cake arrives: Hugo, accompanied by Jenny and Bárbara Chesai (the doggie), of course. Hugo has a shiny scarf wrapped around his head… Upon seeing Michel, Hugo comments, “The father of my children!” [Merci: This guy is hysterical]. He asks Betty if Michel is a model. She explains he’s a French businessman friend of hers. Hugo says to Betty, “Beatríz, with friends like this one, I cannot believe you married a Latin macho billy goat like Armando!” The phone rings and Aura María tells Betty that a Miami bank is calling for the second time and it’s urgent. Betty excuses herself and goes to her office to take the call. Mario tells Armando, “Let’s go to our office,” [Beth’s note: and yet again, Mario is at it with his marvelous word-play. this time it’s using the word for “office,” “despacho,” which is the word Mario would’ve used under ordinary circumstances. the word he does use this time, however, is “despecho,” which means “spite.” LOL!]. Armando says good-bye to Michel and tells him to be well, adding, “This is almost -almost- your company…” [Beth: like saying “our door’s always open to you” or “my house is your house,” only of course Armando doesn’t really mean it… and of course, it is likely also be a reference to Michel’s almost ‘winning’ Betty back when she was first -and very reluctantly- the head of Ecomoda via Terramoda; had Michel actually married Betty i suppose he would would have ended up playing Phillip to Betty’s Queen Elizabeth II…]. Hugo isn’t going to let Michel escape and so asks Michel to accompany him to his workshop to help him translate some texts. Hugo explains that he “handles” all the “tongues” (!!!) but could really use a good French one (!!!). Hugo and Jenny both are all but drooling over Michel… Armando and Mario discuss the fact that Betty lied, but say there has to be an explanation. Mario can’t believe that Armando is going to miss the party due to his mistrust [of Betty] - he tells him he can kiss goodbye to Tatiana de los Ríos, Natalia París, Adriana Castro… Armando says he isn’t going to complain to Betty, that’s the promise they made each other.

In Betty’s office, Aura María tells her everything is all ready for the party. She’s already invited the Fashion Group executives, Betty’s parents, the employees. The only thing missing is the musicians. She wanted to get a jazz group that Armando would like but she didn’t know which one. She tells Betty there is a place called “The Saloon” that has some groups from which to chose, but Betty would have to go herself to see and hire a group. Betty replies she can do that on the way home. Aura María asks her what excuse she is going to give Armando, and Betty says she’ll tell him she is going out for a drink with the Cartel.

Gabriela tries to meet with Armando again to discuss the documents; he’s not at all interested in them and is pretty much ignoring Gabriela at the moment.

We see Michel with Hugo and Jenny; Michel is holding Hugo’s little doggie. Hugo tells Michel he is just divine and asks if his blue eyes are his own or contact lenses… Hugo tells him he is there for whatever Michel might need, and next time he’ll make him a little sandwich with French bread [Beth the cynical: yeah, i’ll just bet…! “little sandwich” indeed!], and how he’s heard that in France they say good-bye with two kisses (one on each cheek instead of just one on one cheek). Michel tells him only couples do that. Hugo says it’s a shame to be single. He greets Gabriela with two kisses, but looks at Armando and says, “I’ve seen this one but I don’t undress him” [Beth: another gem from Ecomoda’s other word-meister, Hugo, this one a play on the word “visto,” which means “seen,” and the first-person present-tense form of the word “desvestir” (to undress) - “desvisto.” i’ve translated what Hugo said literally but suspect he is once again attempting to give the impression that there is or has been something between him and Armando. he used to do that because he wanted there to be something between them, but after the truth about Armando & Betty came out, Hugo started doing it more to embarrass or insult Armando who in any case doesn’t usually pay much attention to his jibes. however, i am going on past experience with Hugo; i didn’t see this episode so can’t tell what his intent was this time]. Hugo tells Jenny to escort Michel to the exit but nothing more. Jenny gives Michel two farewell kisses and says maybe later she could bother him to help her with some French things she needs to translate (!!). He replies that she may bother him whenever she likes [Beth: eeewww Michel! i’m disappointed in you! that’s Jenny, for heaven’s sake! i thought you had more discrimination!], and tells Armando he is going to say good-bye to Betty. Armando stays watching Michel walking towards Betty’s office and starts to imagine the farewell scene between Betty and Michel: it’s all foggy, they kiss and hug each other so much that Michel ends up with Betty’s glasses on his face and Betty is sobbing broken-heartedly. Then he imagines Michel going to say goodbye to Betty with a torrent of romantic things in French; she tells him good-bye. Then he goes back to say good-bye yet again - this time with a rose, saying he’ll love her until he dies.

Back in the ‘real world,’ Gabriela is asking Armando if he can hear her. She wants him to go over the documents. Armando says he’ll get back to her with his opinion on the matter. She tells him, “as you like,” and leaves in a bit of a huff, while over in Betty’s office, Betty tells Michel how she’s going to go to the music place by herself. He tells her he really likes jazz and could go with her if she likes. She says that’s fine. Armando is still outside, waiting.

Michel and Betty leave her office and Michel again congratulates Armando, saying he has a great wife. Armando replies, “You think?” Betty asks Armando when he’s leaving for the anniversary party and he tells her around 7pm. Armando asks Betty if she has some engagement herself. She says she’s going to go out with “the girls” to have a drink somewhere. But then she can’t stand it any more and tells Armando she can’t lie to him - she’s actually made plans to see Michel later.

In his office, Armando is fuming. He tells Mario that Betty wants to go out with Michel again. He can’t take any more! The lie about lunch was the last straw.

Betty is telling the Cartel that she couldn’t lie to Armando - she’d just die if he were to find out. She’d rather tell him a half-truth. Armando calls Betty on the phone and says “Hello, my love. Are you alone?” [He knows she is with the Cartel]. He tells her he’s not going to the anniversary party after all [Mario just about dies when he hears that piece of news!]. Betty asks him why not, and he tells her he doesn’t want to leave the baby with the nana (nanny? grandmother?) so long, and anyway, he’s tired. She tells him to forget about that, she’ll stay - she doesn’t want him to cancel his engagement. He replies no, you forget about that [Merci: these two are a poem!!] - he ’ll go home, he’s NOT going to the party. She tells him if that’s the case, she’ll go home with him. He tells her, “stubborn monster!” then we’ll go home together. Mario asks Armando, “monster”? - he (Armando) created the monstrosity! He spoiled Betty’s date and ruined the anniversary party. Armando shouts back that this is his peace, his tranquility, his wife, his marriage… Mario tells him to leave him alone then, calls him the Husband of the Year and tells him arrivederci…

Armando opens the connecting door to Betty’s office via the “hole.” Betty is telling the Cartel that Armando spoiled her plan with Michel. Armando can’t believe what he’s hearing. Betty’s asking if a phone is ringing and Sofía says it can’t be hers since she doesn’t have one [?? they must be talking about a cel phone…?]. Bertha says the person who has one is Jenny! Betty decides what she will do is wait until Armando falls asleep to organize the party things. Aura María can’t believe either that Betty is going to give up going out with the super-hottie Frenchman. Just then Armando’s cel phone rings and he leaves…

In his office, Armando is telling Mario on the phone that he is NOT going to go to the party - no, no, NO! and good-bye! Then he says to himself: I am not going to fall asleep tonight - no sirree!!

In the conference room, the Cartel is relaxing, drinking some tintos [Beth: i forget - in some countries this would refer to glasses of red wine, but i seem to remember from BLF that in Colombia this refers to coffee or possibly some other non-alcoholic beverage suitable to be served both in an office or a social setting. i distinctly remember icky Daniel Valencia and other business people coming to Ecomoda for morning meetings and being served “tintos,” so i think it’s most likely some kind of coffee]. Aura María comments that it’s 9:30pm already - time to go get ready for the party.

Armando and Betty are in bed together, watching TV. Armando is trying to stay awake, but his eyes are closing against his will. At last he succumbs and starts to snore. Betty waves her hand in front of his face to see if he’s really asleep and is satisfied he is. She carefully gets out of bed, then takes his glasses off his face and puts them on the night table next to him before kissing his forehead. She tip-toes out of the bedroom with her shoes in her hand.

Armando rolls over as if to embrace Betty but when he realizes she’s not there, he starts awake saying “Betty’s flown!” He starts to call to her, “Beatríz! Beatríz! Beatríz!” as he gets angrier and angrier thinking she’s run away. He grabs his coat from the floor and runs out of the apartment [Merci: we must hope that the nanny is sleeping in the service quarters because if not little Camilita is all alone!!]. In the lobby, Betty is explaining to the doorman that the guests are going to arrive at midnight, but not to announce them so that Armando doesn’t find out [and ruin the surprise]. Betty returns to the apartment as the doorman hears someone in the garage ringing for him to open the garage door. The doorman asks himself which of the “doctors” it could be, and then sees it’s Armando, driving off like a wild man. The doorman says to himself of course it could only be Doctor Mendoza.

Betty gets to the bedroom and finds that Armando’s not there. She calls to him but gets no response. Just then, Armando’s cel rings. She picks up to discover it’s Mario Calderón calling. Betty doesn’t say anything, just listens as Mario says “Tiger! Tiger!” and insists that “Armando” listen and hear how great the party is; Armando needs be there, Mario’s there waiting for him. Betty gets all sad and tells herself of course, Armando wanted to go out partying with Mario and made her cancel her date as well.Meanwhile, we see Armando arriving at Michel’s hotel and asking which is Michel’s room. They tell him Michel’s in Room 410, but he left word at the desk that he didn’t want to be disturbed. Armando ignores this and goes upstairs anyway and starts banging on the door of Room 410. Michel opens the door dressed in a bathrobe. He asks Armando what he’s doing there, and Armando tells Michel not to be such a cynic, he’s there for his wife. Michel tells Armando Betty’s not there. Armando pulls the covers off the woman that’s in the bed and is horribly embarrassed to discover it’s not Betty [Beth: i can’t tell, but in some of the pictures Merci included the woman looks like Jenny. if so, i am VERY disappointed in Michel]. He starts to apologize profusely, he practically kisses Michel in his relief but settles for giving him a big hug, and tells Michel he’s very happy. Michel tells Armando to go home or he’ll ruin the surprise Betty’s prepared for him. What surprise, Armando asks, and is told: your birthday surprise. Armando again begs pardon and runs out.

Betty is on the phone with someone, explaining that the whole surprise party for Armando is canceled because he went out with Mario. As she’s saying this her cel rings; it’s Michel. She tells him she can’t talk now, but Michel explains how Armando had been there looking for her, and what happened. She asks Michel if he told Armando about the party and he tells her yes. The elevator door to their apartment opens…

Armando (singing and dancing): C’mere and light the candles, start the dancing… Armandito’s here for his little party! Ay, guys - where are you? I’m here! Where are you? What happened? ¡Happy birthday to you! ¡Happy Birthday, Armandito! ¡Happy Birthday to me!

Betty: Where were you?

Armando: Okay, I’m going to tell you the truth. In the office today I overheard you were going to have a surprise party so I decided to go out for a while so that you could organize everything in peace and quiet. But I’m here now and I want my party! I want my party… Where is everyone?

Betty: Shhhhh… you’re going to wake the baby… [Merci & Beth: ummm, and what about the party and the musicians then…?]

Armando: I’m sorry, I’m sorry….

Betty: Armando, were you looking for me in Michel’s hotel room? Because I was here downstairs in the lobby arranging for him to let the guests and the musicians in…

Armando: Yes, yes, the truth is this morning what I overheard was that you were going to run away with Michel…

Betty: Of course, and I went directly to his hotel…

Armando: I’m really sorry, my love. I know I was wrong, I was jealous. But, in any event, I don’t want us to fight right now. You can tell everyone to come out, that I want to party… PARTY! Here I am…

Betty: My love, my love, the party’s been canceled. There is no party anymore. Your friend Calderón called your cel. I thought you’d gone with him. Why have a party if you weren’t going to be here?

Armando: You thought I was deceiving you all day so I could come home to our apartment and then escape to a party with Calderón? Is that what you’re trying to say? We are bad, my love, we are bad… Because this means that we aren’t trusting each other.

Betty: My love, I think we are going a bit overboard, aren’t we?

Armando: Yes…

Betty: Well… I had to celebrate your birthday alone…

Armando: ‘You had…’

Betty: ‘I had…’ My love, happy birthday!

Armando: My love, believe me: This is going to be the best birthday of my life - the happiest…

Merci: I don’t have any idea what’s going to happen next week since the previews never show what’s really going to happen. Apparently, a mysterious woman enters Mario’s life who will also get Armando into problems, and Betty wants to know everything that’s happened. Who knows what that means…?