Wanderlino Arruda
Djalma Souto


The Esperanto Fraternity

Everything was ready in Campinas, São Paulo for a great meeting of fraternity and great happiness. Over three hundred inscriptions had already arrived from all over Brazil and curiously enough, from Argentina, Uruguay, Peru and Colombia. Just from Bahia state alone, came over forty, mainly from the capital city Salvador. From Montes claros, almost Bahia, only half a dozen. For the first time in history, the Montes Claros Esperanto-Klubo came to a Brazilian Esperanto Congress, even though the last one had also happened in our state of Minas Gerais, in the historical city of Ouro Preto. Too many people, principally for a cold morning in July, when more than one hundred and fifty speakers of this international language filled in the last inscriptions: teachers, students, writers, artists, young and old, conventionally prohibited to speak in any other language besides the one created by the genius of Zamenhof.

I didn’t yet know the professor Elvira Fontes, general secretary of the convention. I had only spoken to her by telephone a few times and, as strange as it seems, a greater admiration and friendship could not be found in face of the simpatia and goodness that she always let bloom. Senior school master, writer, dictionary composer, Madame Elvira Fontes has the charisma of the teacher Marina Lorenzo Fernandez, with the same physical size and spiritual richness. What an enchanting woman! On the male side, the professor Walter Francini, also from Sao Paulo, this looking very much like our “Ducho”, person and voice, calm and good. He is such a good companion it is as if we were in constant companionship, selling magazines, newspapers and books in the bookshop Thais. Both of them, Madame Elvira and Francini of coursee, gave that important meeting an refreshing atmosphere of our old Montes Claros, Robust heart of the hinterland of Francisco Sa!

On the way to Campinas, also in Sao Paulo, taking advantage of the new bus we had taken, a Gontijo, the teacher Antonio Felix, Cynthia, Juliano and I, of course, has already made our first investidas, trying to anticipate these four wonderful days in the world of Esperanto. Felix and I, more experienced, almost veterans, already knew what was going to happen. Carlos Jose, and the others whom had traveled separately, would by only beginners, with the anticipated natural curiosity, proper to new beginners. Fear of not understanding? Fear of being put to the test? Completely normal…

It was with tremendous satisfaction that I reencountered my old friend Saraiva, Adolf Miranda, the master Nelson Perreira, Dorini, Xaxa Arruda, Paiva, the Columbian Aragon, Eleusa Varanda,Nina and Dayse, marvelous people that live distant from each other but getting together at least once a year, when the comprisso yearly congress date comes near. How gratifying it was to be side by side witht the important doktoro Victor Sadler, the director of the Universala Asocio, who was touring Brazil at the Esperanto village Bona Espero, in the state of Goias. Sadler, one of the most notable professors that I had ever known, had lived and breather Esperanto for twenty years, day and night, thoughts and dreams in the neutral universal language. It was as if Esperanto was his mother tongue, naturally native. In England, in Holland, in New York, in Beijing or Brasilia, Sadler is the eternal esperantalist.

The wole convention went quite smoothly, pleasant and invigorating, the most live example of fraternity and linguistic simplicity. We were all one family, united in Esperanto, level of culture or age completely unimportant. Next year, in Belo Horizonte, Minas Gerais, we will be reunited once more for four more wonderful days of Esperanto, the language of the future. For four sublime days our state capital will be la urbo de la espero, the city of hope.

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