jueves, 14 de julio de 2011

Los Naúfragos

Or the Cast Away… A group of friends with a common link in Timor-Leste and their adventures in Portugal.

[Interludio en español: esta será una entrada en inglés. Dedicada a nuestro grupo de de amigos de Timor-Leste. Siendo un grupo que habla en 7 idiomas no queda otra que usar el esperanto por default: inglés. Prometo alguna traducción o mejorar el blog con herramientas multi lenguaje. Pero por ahora pueden usar las herramientas del idioma de Google]

In the group we sum up 7 languages and 8 languages: English (from the USA members), Italian (Italy), Portuguese (Portugal and Brazil – uhum, not too good Brazilian Portuguese though), Spanish (Argentina), German (Germany), Norwegian (Norway) and Indi (India). The common language is English, the new Esperanto of the 20th century, and Portuguese as a 2nd more common language. Spanish is an up runner but very distant (at least there are some attraction to learn it). And we all love the sweatiness of the accent of our German friends, and the strangeness of the Norwegian…

What was all the fuss about?

In some way our kids put us together, and in some other ways we got together alone well. All working and living in Timor-Leste (in that order), some for many years (7/8 yrs), others between 4 and 2 years. We share many some few things in common, but a lot of common times in Timor. And for all after a while is time to move back home, or go to a new post. And we knew we will miss each other.

In this environment everybody knows it will happen, but somehow the idea of fighting against the usual way was in motion…

How it come to be?

And somehow, someone came up with the idea of seeing each other, all, the next year. Why not in my home country, Portugal? When and where? Maybe in one of the many picnics in the lovely beaches of Timor…


Perhaps this idea came thanks to the blessings of good food, wines and maybe more important was the effect and influence of the gin tonics!

And the Noronha’s original idea of meeting in Portugal next year set on stone or we can it say better in email. And some 4-5 months before June 2011 most of the group starting re floating the idea and trying to make it happen and set a date, just because for most of us getting out of the island needs preparation and quite some logistics.

From Anne to Noronha’s in February 24th 2011:

“Hope you are well. We are just dandy … it’s recorder/science fair time, rains every day, egg shortage time, haven’t seen butter since before Christmas, there’s a new cock fighting arena on your old street, your old house has been fortified so we can’t see it any more, we moved into Naz & Megan’s old house, Leader got a new sign, someone painted cross walks and center lines on the street … that’s about it.

We are still planning to see you in Portugal this summer. I’m borrowing my sister-in-law’s car in Madrid and driving over. Let us know when we should show up. If your plans have been postponed let me know…. I may somewhere else. Michael is still not sure what he’s doing, but girls and are in Europe for at least 6 weeks so hope to catch up with you at some point”

From the Piterbarg’s to the Noronha’s in February 25th 2011:

“My dearest friends,

How are all of you doing? Sorry to bother but I would really appreciate if you can give us any hint about when are you planning to meet in Portugal. It's important because we need to buy tickets and also make arrangements with our part of the family in Spain.

Big hug from rainy Dili!”

Answer from Noronha’s to several (Piterbarg’s, Parr’s, Svenghaus’)

“Hi guys
Summer beckons. Today while replying to anne, sort of zeroed in on Friday first of july to descend from your various destinations so we can catch the weekend too (…)

Carlos managed to get Elena and Silvio on skype (a recent development at home so I'm finally connected!) and we've been plotting the big reunion end June-early July (…)

We're looking at about a three-four day reunion at the farmhouse and then people want to see Porto, Lisbon etc. We could catch up again in a city or do day things around an event or two-all up for planning at this point (…)”

And so it was set!

From where did we meet?

  • The Noronha’s flown from Papua New Guinea (PNG) to Portugal, via Australia. And setup a fantastic reception for the rest of the group. A visit to Lisbon in June 29th represented the first meeting of the group.


  • The Cesaretti’s left Timor-Leste mid June (?) to their home base in Rome, and met the Casagrande’s in Lisbon June 29th. Both families left June 30th north direction Estarreja with stop in Nazare and Coimbra, arriving Estarreja July 1st
  • The Venghaus’ settled in Germany a year before in 2010 and moved in from their home country (is it?) to Porto in July 1st, arriving in Estarreja same day,
  • The Parr’s left Timor-Leste June 25th to Holland, flown to Madrid and drove all the way to Estarreja arriving July 2nd,
  • The Casagrande’s left the island of Timor-Leste in June 26th, arriving in Lisbon June 27th, met the Nornonha’s and Cesaretti’s June 29th, drove with the Cesaretti’s along the lovely Portuguese coast to arrive in Estarreja July 1st

And we were all back together including our fantastic hosts: Carlos’ parents:


Where did we go around together?

And we visited Lisbon, Sintra, Nazaré, Coimbra, Estarreja, Obidos, Aviero, Viseu, Tabua and Piódão (and I hope to keep track of all them, but sure I’m forgetting some places!)


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