Sunday, 21 February 2021

1971-2021: Tribute to our Network

How can we not continue to vibrate rhythmically in our Ayllu?

The Cajamarca Rural Libraries Network is not only a non-profit organization, it is also, and even more so, a community of women, men, children, youth; apus, springs, lagoons, roads, guinea pigs, offspring; capulíes, prickly pears, lucumas, pomegranates ... well, we are so many because we are here!

The Cajamarca Rural Libraries Network is our home, it is our spirit and breath. It is our source of knowledge and peasant experience; principle of harmonization and love. Exemplary teacher of our ancestors; present teacher of our futures.

Saturday, 20 February 2021

Homage to spirit and drive

This 2021 is the year of the chacarera (farmer), community and Andean commemoration of the Cajamarca Rural Library Network.

In its 50th year, we offer our love and admiration, our respect and gratitude to all the peasant library families who today continue and remain "with books in Earth."

We want to always remember and offer our encouragement to Father Juan Medcalf Todd, founder of the Network, and to Alfredo Mires Ortiz, promoter and guide: thanks to them for so much.

How nice it is to volunteer!

So says a song that was sang and continues to be sung by Víctor Jara. And he also says between his verses: "If the mountain does not come, walk towards it."

A little while ago we were trying to communicate with our brother Jacinto Aguilar, from the distant community of Carrizal, and we couldn't manage it, not even with how "good" the mobile phone signal is in these parts.

We could not find a way, also, amid the restrictions due to Covid.

So we called our friend Miguel Rodríguez, a volunteer for the Network in the Cajabamba province, to ask him if there was any way to contact the community. And his response was: “I'll go. Tell me when to go.”

And so it was: Miguel rode on his motorcycle until he met Jacinto.

That poise, that 'roll-up your sleeves', that daring and boldness, is school and is an example.

Thanks to Miguel and to those like him who populate this dear and wonderful path.

Friday, 19 February 2021

Better to read

A few weeks ago I saw a publication on a social network, it had a quote that caught my attention, it was a bit strange and it was attributed to a text taken from one of my favorite books: "The Little Prince." It bothered me not to recognize that quote, not to remember it, despite having read the book many times. So I took the book and reread it very carefully to locate the quoted text, and I couldn't find it. In addition, both the message and the language seemed rather to be taken from those phrases that are invented "on the go" to get out of trouble.

In this regard, and not only making reference to literary but also historical texts, in a conference about native cultures, our brother Alfredo Mires mentioned other omissions and distortions that are becoming terrible errors and prevent us from knowing the truth of how events have happened. For example, he says:

Official history is full of shameful omissions, cowardly ambiguities, and hideous distortions.

But, in addition, these days, data like this circulates:

"Dear Sancho: I check with regret how palaces are occupied by gangsters and huts by wise men. I was never a defender of kings, but worse are those who deceive the people with tricks and lies, promising what they know they will never give them. Dear country, beloved Sancho, who dethrones kings and crowns pirates, thinking that the king's gold will be distributed among the people, without knowing that pirates only distribute among pirates.”

This is false: it is not in Cervantes's work: it is a hoax. [A hoax is “a falsehood deliberately articulated to be perceived as truth. The Anglicism hoax (farce), with which it is also known, became popular in Spanish by referring to massive deceptions by electronic means, especially the Internet ”(…)“ BULO = filth, a caló word  (calé, zincaló or Iberian Romani), language of the Spanish gypsies"].

One of my children also commented to me that, when reading books that have been taken to the cinema, he finds many differences, not only in reduction of content -which is understood in terms of time restrictions, but also in changes in the plot, in scenes and in other aspects that detract from the delight of the original texts. And it is always a shame to know of books that have so much to show and that are unknown because you only see what the movie chooses.

In our Rural Libraries of Cajamarca we always say that it is better to read the book before seeing the film. Here, we allow ourselves to be "tamed" (this word is written in "The Little Prince") by the books. And we want to continue "creating links" with that wonderful being that we can touch, peel, hug, read and reread as many times as possible. And this book-reader link is essential so as not to be fooled by the famous “hoaxes” on social networks, to know that data that the official history hides from us, and also to naturally imagine all the scenes that we can find on each page of a book which are impossible to make for any movie. Sometimes, when we hear comments such as "that book is very good, it deserves to be taken to the cinema, I hope a producer is encouraged", we think if it would not be better to say "I hope many people read it, before it is taken to the cinema."

Lola Paredes

Thursday, 18 February 2021

The itinerant rural library

At the end of 2020, Alfredo Mires shared with librarians from the National Network of Public Libraries of Colombia.

The topic was "The itinerant rural library and its relations with the community", in the fifth session of the Cycle of Virtual Encounters of the National Traveling Library Program, PaLaBriando.

On this occasion Alfredo shared his wisdom on the subject of libraries as autonomous community and rural projects. Some elements that he explained:

- The community is not a donation, nor a concession, nor a gift.

- Not only the birth, but the path. Depending on what is sown and with whom it is sown, the harvest will be seen.

- The library must emerge from the colors and context of the rural.

- The basic community forms us, educates us, forges us.

In this link you can see the full discussion:

Wednesday, 17 February 2021

Reading as a family

Our friend Daniel Sáenz More, who was also a volunteer in our Network for some time, sent us this photo, with memories of his beginnings as a reader: at home he read, the family read.

Here is a photo of his mother, Anabella More Beaugy, a librarian, reading with and for her children.

The memory lives on

For those of us who love traditions, the stories of our grandparents are medicine for the soul, a great incentive in difficult times. These stories not only contain wisdom, but are also signs of love for what is ours, for everything that lives, for everything that exists.

Every time we hear a story we dream of places, we imagine ourselves enjoying delicious food, we laugh, we cry, we are scared, we hug, we cheer ourselves up, we accompany each other.

Today, this library family about to turn 50, continues to tell and listen to the stories of our grandparents, of our communities. And soon, thanks to the tireless push of our brothers and sisters, we will have the joy of enjoying the wonderful stories that are about to be published, which are also illustrated by a sister of ours, who tells us that to draw she mixed her imagination with her memories.

Congratulations, brothers and sisters, and thank you for making it possible to keep the memory alive.