Angel Falls, Babelfish, Bolivares, boy racer, bucket list, Caracas, Father Gabriel, Guarani, Mendoza, Orpheus, Robert de Niro, Spanglish, Teach-it, The Mission
Apologies, Hugo, for not having written for a while. It is the end of term
and I have had to compose my speech and report for Prize-
I will send you a transcript and maybe you can subject it to Babelfish.
So sorry that I had to disillusion you as to our kinship, but am glad
that you understand. Your mother, Berenice, was a great old girl and
such a ‘goer‘! Her sister, Augusta, is very much of a similar cast. In fact,
you could say that they broke the mould once those two came on the
The news from Caracas is fairly dire, so we hope that you are safe amid
all the violence and mayhem. Having cheap petrol is no substitute for a
peaceful existence and, unless one is a boy racer, it can’t
be much fun.
How I would have liked to have invited you over here to meet Aunt Augusta
and to have taken a trip to Wyvern Mote with you. Alas, it is not possible
at this juncture, but perhaps one day, when your political situation has
thawed, calmed and resolved itself into a dew, your dreams can be realised.
I expect that I will not be able to visit The Angel Falls with you any time soon,
though in retirement, it was on my -ghastly phrase!- ‘bucket list’. I always
empathised and identified with Father Gabriel in The Mission, who could calm
the Guarani by playing his oboe, like a latter day Orpheus. Sadly, in school,
discipline is very much more difficult and madness is not so easily subdued by
creating recorder groups. Believe me. The natives are very much revolting
and I don’t need to tell you what that is like! We need Robert de Niro types
to come and work some Mendoza magic. I suppose Teach-it won’t
necessarily attract such heroes, not even for shedloads of golden
Maybe the power of the closing words from the film could be applied
universally, to our present global woes: The light shines in the darkness
and the darkness does not overcome it. (I prefer ‘comprehendeth it not’,
but nowadays no one comprehendeth that. I blame their education.)
Se muy valiente my amigo! Forgive my Spanglish. Whatever the language,
the sentiment is the same.