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Diary of Fundacion Belen

Going out the tunnel

September 2005

img1Close your eyes just a minute,. More, still more. Can you see anything? ¿Nothing at all? Well, now imagine yourself always like this. Every day, every hour.

John lives that way since he was born twelve years ago. He is blind. He has brown hair, he is tall, cheerful, good student and bad at sports. He likes music and maths. He says he will be a guitarist.

Every morning he goes to school by underground with his father, they talk a lot.

He wears a white cane to guide his steps, he would like to have a dog, is his daily fight.

One day his father said: ” Pay attention John! from tomorrow you will travel by yourself. The day after he went alone, he was thrilled, a bit of fear, emotion for having become a grown up. He went into the train, noticing the sounds, the talks, counting the stations. He knew the journey by heart, every day was the same, it was impossible to get lost.

But one morning something was different: the people was speaking in loud voices “what may have happened? “I am afraid” cried a child. “I don’t like this kind of things”…”Don’t worry, the light will turn on”…so, thought John, it was the light, the station was at dark, like him!. “What can we do? “How could we get out of the underground?”

All of a sudden John said “I can guide you out of the underground, I am blind, I know the way, trust on me”.

So it was. John was the first one of a long line of silent passengers, hand in hand, following him through the corridors, the stairs, until he felt the sun light. He was very happy to be in the street.

Everyone applauded and thanked him. “You’re a hero!” “You have guided us!”, “You can see in the darkness!”. No, said John, I am simply a blind boy, but I can see what is necessary, even if I have no light”.

The Best Man

October 2005

img2Hi ! I am Dicky, though as I am the best man in this wedding I think that may be is better to be called Henry. I am the best man, I am waiting for the bride, the bride is my sister Silvia.

I am waiting for her at the hall of our home. I am looking through the stained glasses, it was Silvia who taught me to look through them. Hey Dicky!, don’t be sad, look though the yellow glass!…and the court was no longer dirty and grey, was a sunny and golden beach. Another day it was through the red glass and Silvia spoke about fire, volcanoes and a fireplace in a winter night. And the blue one was the sea and the one I preferred the best was the green one, it was like the field, with fresh grass…

It may sound silly to become happy for these things …but as I have come back home so many days sad from school, before entering into the dining room I used to look through the stained glasses to cheer up myself before answering my mother and my grand mother when they asked me about school…”Well, it was all right!”.

Because at school was terrible, the children laughed at me, they called me abnormal, silly, mongolic…Until I learned karate and began to defend myself.

I live with my grand mother, my aunt, my mother and my sister Silvia. My grand mother is nice and loving, she tell stories. My aunt is gay and helpful, my mother is a bit sad, may be it is because of work, she has to work a lot since the day my father left us. They say that before it was different, he lived at home. But that was before I was born. He is always travelling, he phones very often and is very proud of Silvia and send gifts, lots of gifts. When I want to know how he looks I go to see his picture at the sitting room.

With a lot of effort (everything is an effort for me) I have succeeded at primary school and I work now at the factory, I get paid. My father has phoned for the wedding, he has said he would like to be the best man. Silvia has told him that the best man was already chosen that it was to be me.

And here I am, the best man waiting for the bride. The sun through the stained glasses has turned the wall into a rainbow.

The Magic Smile

December 2005

img3She always accompanied her aunt for the daily shopping, they formed a strange couple, familiar for those who went to the same market and even if she was respected and considered by the neighbours, it was Mary who was most popular and loved. She was six years old and was the most smiling and gay person you can imagine. Always so clean and tidy and looking so happy that it was impossible not to reply her with another big smile. She always greeted with such a sincere and friendly smile that sad faces got erased. Sellers and clients forgot for a moment their problems and everywhere she passed by she left a trail of good humour and friendliness.

Mary had a power, she could transform and sweeten the persons she met, even if it was only the conventional wish of “Good Morning” people felt really it was a good morning!!!

But suddenly the family had to move to another town. No one would have noticed it but for the little girl who with her only presence could make people feel happier.

She never aroused a feeling of pity or pain, even if she was different. Because Mary was not as the rest of children of her age. She could not walk and was always seated on a wheel chair. For she was born with a bifid spine. People love her by her inner happiness, her smile, her warm and sincere greetings. Her capacity to cheer up the spirit of those she met.

When she left, a general sadness filled the neighbourhood, they missed her and they still wait for her to come back.

The Ants Go the Other Way Round

February 2006

img4Mona is eight years old. In the park she seats alone, far away from the other children. She always likes to play by herself and to look at the ants.

At school she has not many friends because she is all the time silent and listening and looking with attention what happens around her. When the teacher asks her she always knows the answer but she speaks in such a low voice that no one can hear her, and the children laugh and she turns red.

She is very clever, says her father. She is a very good girl, says her grand mother, she is a very good observer, says her grand father, yes, but she is so silent, says her mother.

The teacher said she was very shy and timid, that was the problem. “Answer in a loud voice, Mona, don’t be shy !” used to say the teacher and Mona got red and children laughed. That was the reason why Mona preferred to go to the park and observe the fast moving ants going around.

But one day when she was observing the ants she said of a sudden to her mother “Let us go home quickly!”.- But we have just arrived, said her mother.” No ! mom, please, let us go home, quickly!!” and she said this in a very loud voice. Every one looked at her but she did not care and she repeated :Go, go, quick!! Every one was astonished, but her mother said “We rather go, may be something happens” and the people left the park.

A very strong wind started to blow in a very strange way and an increasing buzz was getting closer. When they were out of the park they could hear the cry “Fire, fire!” and the firemen getting into the park.

The people surrounded Mona to thank her. “Thanks, thanks you have saved us!!…But, how could you know that something was happening?” Mona answered loud and clear :”I didn’t know what was wrong, but the ants were running just the other way round they usually do”.

Call Clotilde

May 2006

img5Diego is walking quickly by the street. He wants to arrive on time to play basket. But even so he is looking with attention every thing. His mother, before leaving, always kisses him and says “Diego, you must be more attentive, more conscious than any other boy, for a double reason: first, to enjoy life, because if you are not quite conscious is as if you were sleeping and second for your own safety. You have to see what you aren’t able to hear”.

His mother speaks to him by signs since he was born nine years ago. Because Diego is deaf since birth. He cannot hear but he is used to look with attention around him. He has a lot of friends, he lives happily with his family, he studies, plays, though there are days when he asks himself how could be music like.

But today he is looking at the man with the blue jacket who is walking before him in a very strange way. He is doing something different, he steps not straight. Diego stops just at the same time that the man in the blue jacket falls down.

In a moment a lot of people surrounded the man, asking him “What happens? How do you feel?. A young man arrived : “I am a medicine student, please, let me see”. Diego is there, observing the scene. The young man said, “It is a heart attack, please call for an ambulance”- Diego is looking at the man in blue jacket and is writing attentively. Takes the student by his hand and shows him what he has written. The student reads in loud voice ” this man is moving his lips and saying: Call Clotilde to the number 2233233″.

The student shows the paper to the fallen man and he makes an affirmative sign, moving again his lips. Diego writes down and gives the paper to the student, who reads: “I have my medicine in the upper pocket of my jacket”. There, he found the pills and a paper saying “Call, Clotilde”.

When the ambulance arrives the man looks better and can even speak. “Thank you my boy, you have saved my life, you are a hero!!”. The medicine student asked Diego ” How can you read by the lips?” and Diego wrote: “I am deaf, when I’ll grow up I want to become also a doctor. Now I have to run to arrive on time to the training. Bye Bye”.

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