Falta-me o Pedro

É a segunda vez na minha vida que vou para Portugal sem lá estar o Pedro. A primeira foi quando me embarcaram no “Alcantara” no dia 11 de outubro de 1952 com destino a Lisboa. A 23 de fevereiro de 1954 nascia o Pedro. Desde então fomos irmãos. Passámos 14 anos como irmãos primeiro crianças e depois adolescentes. Passam- me muitas imagens desses tempos pela cabeça. Tivemos como todos momentos bons e maus. Coisas que me marcaram talvez não o tenham marcado tanto. Nunca o saberemos. O Pedro não se abria muito. Quando os nossos pais se separaram foi um rude golpe. Estávamos em idade difícil. Não entendíamos muito bem o que se passava, mas as brigas dos nossos pais eram difícil de lidar.
Fomos parar ao colégio Valsassina como alunos internos e no verão fomos para a colônia de férias na Praia das Maçãs. Para mim esse tempo foi dramático. Como irmão mais velho sentia que tinha que proteger o Pedro.
As coisas acalmaram quando fomos para Carcavelos viver com a nossa mãe, irmã Joana e avó Bua. O Pedro era muito generoso. Sempre nos lembrávamos quando íamos à Feira Popular e ele sempre tinha uns tostões para fazermos qualquer coisa extra. Na Praceta de Carcavelos o Pedro adoptou cães abandonados e fez comércio com bichos da seda.
A qualquer jogo de mesa que participasse tacitamente e irremediavelmente ganhava. Não havia hipótese. A escola no entanto não era para ele e nunca percebeu muito bem o que lá andava a fazer. Preocupava todos quando desaparecia para pescar ou fazer campismo. Nunca deu nenhuma importância aos confortos caseiros. Preferia mesmo era uma vida simples e sem complicações. Mais tarde aderiu à vida de praia e gostava de dar mergulhos no nosso mar Atlântico.
Quando era pequeno lembro-me de o ver jogar ao berlinde com grande entusiasmo e de cócoras. Da varanda a minha avó preocupava-se com o Pedro e seu futuro. Talvez pudesse ser relojoeiro?
Não foi para muito longe. Foi para a montagem de filmes. Gostava daquele ambiente que requeria paciência e ambientes fechados . Foi nos filmes que conheceu a Maria João e com ela teve as duas maravilhosas filhas Marta e Catarina.
 O Pedro integrou-se na nova família. Cumpriu o seu papel de pai acompanhando as filhas quando cresciam. Penso que foi um bom pai para as meninas e que se esforçou por fazer o melhor. Sempre mostrou orgulho por elas sem precisar de o dizer diretamente.
A vida do trabalhador da área do cinema não é fácil. É um ramo para entusiastas sempre com pouco dinheiro. O Pedro nunca ganhou grande coisa no cinema e quando as montagens passaram para a digitalização não sei se acompanhou as mudanças. Para dizer a verdade nunca percebia grande coisa quando falava da sua vida profissional. Sei que tinha alguns amigos nos filmes. Estava sempre disposto a ir com eles por esse Portugal fora fazendo diversos trabalhos ligados às produções cinematográficas.
Mais tarde na vida quando se separou da Maria João conheceu a Sara e com ela teve o Miguel. Este filho passou a ser o motivo principal da sua vida. Andava sempre com o Miguel e ajudava a Sara. Teve um amigo no Andy que apoiou a família nos momentos difíceis. Faleceu no passado dia 12 de maio após prolongada e dolorosa doença que enfrentou à maneira da sua personalidade tentando envolver outros o mínimo possível. Era o meu irmão e sinto a sua falta.

Portugueses de Sundsvall

Muita gente sabe que os portugueses podem aparecer nos sitios mais reconditos do planeta. Decidi, de memória, fazer um pequeno e limitado relatório sobre a relação entre os portugueses e a cidade de Sundsvall na Suécia.

Provávelmente a primeira referencia terá sido o Joaquim Oliveira que andava embarcado nos barcos do SCA e por conseguinte passava pouco tempo em terra. Voltou para o seu Algarve mas acabou por desaparecer servindo este artigo tambem como um convite para quem souber dele enviar alguma informação sobre o seu paradeiro. Fizeram permanencia curta na década de 80 os filhos João e José.

Quando da construcão do hospital distrital tambem cá parou o arquitecto Luis Pereira hoje em Estocolmo.

Quem para cá veio e ficou fe-lo por ter conhecido alguem o que afinal é um motivo sobejamente universal para que as pessoas mudem os rumos às suas vida. Assim se passou comigo quando definitivamente vim para cá viver em 1973. Tambem por mesmos motivos cá apareceu ainda na década de 70 a Isabel Costa beirã da zona de Viseu que hoje é enfermeira e trabalha em Estocolmo nunca deixando de visitar Sundsvall. Pouco tempo depois apareceu a Manuela Pettersson que tendo conhecido o Lennart lá para as bandas de Coimbra aqui se estabeleceu e ficou, tendo já netos à sua conta.

Tambem a algarvia Guiomar Holmström veio mais tarde e casou-se com o Mikael trabalhando presentemente numa pré escolar.

O Herlander Sapage é outra história, veio mas sem nunca ter um relacionamento a 100% com esta cidade, trabalha e vive hoje em Luleå. A Graça Olsson esteve cá uns anos, foi para Estocolmo mas está de volta, já que o filho por cá ficou. A querida Helena Sequeira Svedin portuense e professora de linguas deixou-nos prematuramente deixando tambem filhos e o Björn que foi afinal o motivo que a trouxe para estas bandas.

Todos estes vieram pois conheceram quem os para cá trouxe. A minha mulher Patricia tambem veio por mesmo motivo trazendo os dois rapazes David e Daniel aos quais se juntou tambem o irmão Cristóvão Meneses.

Tambem há exemplos do contrário como é o caso do Miguel Varanda que hoje vive em Lisboa com a sua Malin.

A Catarina Conde trabalhava aqui na medicina mas já foi para outras paragens.

Com a aparecimento da Mittuniversitet dá a nossa cidade passos largos para a internacionalização que uma universidade sempre cria e desenvolve. Para estudar fotografia já por cá passaram o Nuno Perestrelo e o João Barata. Tambem mais recentemente o montijense Daniel Raposo e a investigadora Teresa Silva cá está agora.

Um simpático casal que durante um par de anos aqui residiu foram o Alexandre Vidal Pinheiro e a Rita que veio estudar design. Graças à ajuda do Alexandre tenho este blogue para comunicar esta interessante informação.

São dados incompletos em que basicamente me concentrei nas primeiras gerações. Quem quiser completar ou comentar fá-lo-á melhor escrevendo no próprio blogue para que se possam posteriormente encontrar estes dados.

A foto aqui publicada no topo  dá conta de convivio luso brasileiro em 1983.

A de baixo mostra uma geracão de portugueses mais recente.

 

Legendas de João Manuel Pinheiro

1988

Era sem duvida um factor de grande orgulho ver o nome do meu pai nos ecrãs da RTP. Às vezes perguntavam-me se era o meu pai que fazia as legendas, enfim tinha uma celebridade na familia.Sentia-me alem disso participativo pois passava horas ao lado da moviola de trabalho num estúdio do Lumiar onde se fabricavam as legendas, em métodos, hoje considerados artesanais, mas naquelas épocas analógicas era mesmo high tech.

Mas havia mais, quando era miúdo participou na longa metragem “Canção da Terra”. Era pura e simplesmente o João Manuel. Ainda fomos ver o filme num salão qualquer dum bairro popular de Lisboa e guardo memórias do tal sentimento de orgulho e admiração que todos os filhos aspiram ter em relação aos pais.

Não recebi uma educação liberal, longe disso… Aquela geração dele tinha sida formada por ditaduras e intolerancias e consequentemente havia que tomar partido pois ou se estava com os bons ou com os maus, com os pobres ou com os ricos, com o PC ou com a União Nacional, com o Sporting ou com o Benfica. Foram tambem essas intransigencias que registraram as mais fortes memórias, positivas e negativas e que sem duvida contribuiram de forma inequivoca para a minha formação como homem adulto.

Foi sócio do Sporting mais de 50 anos e ía ver os jogos a Alvalade até poder. O marido duma tia levava-o em pequeno e ficou sportinguista.

A pequena classe média de Lisboa era principalmente intelectual. Frequentou o Colégio Valsassina onde conheceu outros rapazes do mesmo meio. O meu avo tinha sido advogado e politico, logo era homem de letras e humanista. Segundo o meu pai um pragmático como eu.

A irmã mais velha Maria Rogéria tinha emigrado e residia em Paris logo depois da guerra. O tempo que passou com ela lá, foi descrito como dos melhores da vida dele. Jantou com Jean Paul Sartre e conviveu com pessoas interessantes. A ida para Londrés, para tirar um curso de engenharia, foi-lhe imposto e não o entusiasmava. Foi aí no entanto que conheceu a Pam, minha mãe e casaram. Em 1952 nascia eu, o primeiro filho, em Stafford.

Na vida profissional passou por muitos sitios. Relembro minas da Urgeirica, C. Santos, Holliday on Ice, Ponte sobre o Tejo, Sheraton, Projecto Quinta do Lago, Intituto Portugues do Cinema. Deu aulas de ingles, estudou na faculdade como aluno mais velho.

Mas principalmente tinha sede de saber, de aprender.

Os filhos eram a sua paixão e preocupacão. Gostava da ideia de chefe de familia, sendo que não teve na realidade grande familia. Já em Portugal nasceram o Pedro e a Joana. Fez o que pode e o que soube fazer. As incompatibilidades com a minha mãe cedo se mostraram e as separações materializaram-se para desgosto e drama dos filhos e deles próprios.

Finalmente conheceu e casou-se pela segunda vez em 1988 . A Leonor foi a mulher que lhe trouxe felicidade e estabilidade emocional. Foi a companheira que procurou e encontrou. Interesses semelhantes e viagens conjuntas trouxeram imensa felicidade e recordo o reencontrar dos primos espanhóis e as férias em Fuengirola.

João Manuel Henriques Pinheiro faleceu no dia 16 de setembro 2016 com 91 anos.

Estão convidados a partilhar memórias e acrescentar dados aqui neste blogue.

joaomanuel

Goodbye Chile

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I now resume my account of the historical events in December 1989 and the outcome of a new and more promising period in the history of Chile. Waking up in Concepcion we were surprised by the Lucia singing by two of the swedish girls in the delegation. Lucia is celebrated on the 13th December in what is the darkest, gloomiest part of the year when the sun hardly shows up. In Chile however  it is summer in December!

The bus trip back to Santiago was done in the hottest conditions and after arrival we dragged ourselsves to a reception at the Swedish embassy where both member of Swedish parliament Hans- Göran Frank and journalist Anette Kullenberg were present.

Finally, the most awaited day came. It was now that the Pinochet dictatorship would start to be dismantled and replaced by democratic elected representatives. At the head of it all Patricio Aylwin who would also become president. 17 parties united behind the candidate in an electoral system designed not to allow centre and left parties to succeed. The largest parties in the Alliance (Concertacion por la Democracia) were the Christian democrats and left coalition PPD.

We visited many places where elections were taking place. Everything was going on peacefully and orderly. Night came. Our hotel was just in front of president Aylwin’s headquarters . It was all but easy to grasp all that was happening but I sensed that despite an orderly election many people were anxious that the process would not be carried through.

Next morning as we were being briefed on the outcomes of the election day we sensed a sticky smell. Teargas and water cannons were being used by police to scare off some demonstrators. Chile would from this day return to a slow normality building up a new hope.

As to us “swedes” it was time to leave, conscious that we had experienced historical moments in Chile but also in the rest of a new Latin America.

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At swedish embassy with Mr. Frank on background

Conceived for homelessness?

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As I temporarily regain contact with you, dear readers, I am describing my awakening on the 10th December 1989 in the capital city of Santiago de Chile. The Swedish delegation would be aware that this is Nobel day, back home, but Chileans were most aware that there was an important election coming up.

Many hundreds of thousands had gathered at the O’Higgins Park to listen to the final pre-election speeches of Democracy candidate Patricio Aylwin. The excitement and enthusiasm of the crowds gathered at this park on this day was indescribable.

Swedish Embassy official Staffan Wrigstad and Ingemar Söderberg  from Swedish cooperation agency (SIDA) met us soon after. They gave us, their view on expected political and economic developments in the country. In the evening we managed to squeeze in a visit to poor residential area Renca  and saw the activities that were taking place there, where rehearsal for election procedures were being drilled.

On Monday we sat on the bus for the long journey to Concepcion, 600 Kilometres to the south.

This city claims a well-known university where we saw a famous wall painting by Mexican artist Jorge Gonzalez Camarena. The main goal for our trip was to visit Maria Gonzalez home for homeless girls. This project that helped girls escape a future in prostitution and drugs, was started by Marlene Sandoval. Aftonbladet´s journalist Anette Kullenberg helped with contacts with Swedish labour organizations that went in, with economic support.

The home could at this time give residence and support to 25 girls. At this time there were estimates that many children (up to 1 million) lived in the streets, about half of these in the Concepción region alone. In this context this project could be seen as a drop in the ocean but through the years many of these children were helped to better perspectives. The girls showed through a drama representation what they had experienced during their homeless existence.

On this same day we carried on south to the mining community of Lota. Here we could join up with workers at the local Folkets Hus. To be able to have this meeting our hosts got permission from the authorities, as gatherings are not normally permitted 48 hours before an election.

The Lota club organized social activities for the benefit of the families in this mining district. And Lota would be as far south as I would travel in the southern hemisphere.

Elections approaching we travelled back to Santiago.

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Lagos y Cerros

Lagos

On the 9th of December 1989, a Saturday, the Swedish labour movement delegation where I was included sat on a bus to take us to Valparaiso. The morning had been spent, learning about the forthcoming elections and the PPD’s plan to regain democratic power in Chile after Pinochet’s dictatorship. This election was, after all, the main reason for our visit and this election was the result of a victory by the democratic voters in the referendum of 1988.

We joined up with Senate candidate Ricardo Lagos and could in the middle of the crowd listen to many complaints about the appalling conditions residents chose to take up with us. Lagos would later become president of the Republic of Chile. Together with us you can spot José Goñi that accompanied this delegation and is presently ambassador in Stockholm. This I was actually not aware of until yesterday when I received his Christmas greetings.

Visiting Valparaiso had a special importance to me. I had met many Chilean immigrants in my hometown of Sundsvall the previous couple of years and many came from this hilly coastal town. In Sundsvall they found a hilly town too even if the Cerros of Valparaiso were not easily compared to Sundsvall’s own Norra and Södra berg. Even the huge Pacific Ocean at this coastal city’s feet would have to compare to the even calmer Baltic Sea. I remember that we arrived from the 100 km bus trip and went to a restaurant where many sea food dishes were presented and many of these were exciting novelties to practically all of us.

The afternoon was spent visiting our Folkets Hus (Cenpros) project and learning about the hard toll on youth and women that the dictatorship had burdened on so many. Problems with unemployment, crime, lack of education opportunities, violence, abortions and other social problems had been allowed to grow by a regime that cared little for the people and their well-being.

We saw also another side of the society, away from the Cerros and through fashionable Viña del Mar a few miles away where the wealthy rather spent their time.

 

Valparaiso 1989

We were there, Chile

Cenpros

Almost exactly twenty five years have passed since a delegation from Swedish labor movement touched down in Latin America. Our final destination was Chile as it prepared to go officially from the 26 year old Pinochet dictatorship to a new democratically elected  president.

As we rolled out from Buenos Aires towards the airport we learnt that the Argentinian peso suffered devaluation. This time it was 35%. The date was Friday the 8th December 1989. It would take time for Latin America to get back on its feet. Our delegation represented organizations that were helping out with projects to help people organize themselves.

As soon as we had checked in at the Hotel Libertador, on the largest and most important avenue in central Santiago, we headed for visits at the residential areas of La Victoria and La Pintana. The people were enthusiastically waiting for us with their home made empanadas and other refreshments.

Much of the activities described for these meeting points or CENPROS “Casas Del Pueblo” were related to the need people had to meet, educate themselves and develop cultural activities. People described the many problems that affected the populations with the increase use of drugs.

To regain dignity is important when people reach bottom level. The stress caused by unemployment and persecutions drove many people to leave their country. In Sundsvall where I live, there was already a Chilean colony, that remade their lives here. Because I knew so many of these Chileans my visit to their country was of special significance to me.

The party we gave our support to was the PPD (Partido por la Democracia). It was a wide alliance of democratic parties that joined forces to put an end to the military dictatorship. Our visit was purposely organized to witness the election of a new president, that on the 24th march 1990 would put Chile back where it belonged, among the democratic countries of the world. And we were there as history turned the page.

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I see a mountain

paso carrasco

Twenty five years is a long time and it corresponds almost precisely to the period of time that elapsed ,since I was privileged enough, to visit 4 latin american countries in 1989.
My memory played me a trick and I wrongly recalled going to Buenos Aires after São Paulo instead of the Uruguayan capital of Montevideo. Never mind, I am now putting it right…
Elections had just been held and coming out as winner was conservative leader Luis Alberto Lacalle. He held the post as president for the coming five years. This was a period of democratic stabilisation after years of persecution an dictatorship. It was also the first opportunity for the left to present itself in open free elections. The outcome for the left organised as Frente Amplio got 21%of the votes.
Montevideo seemed to me as peaceful city contrasting with the high buildings of the other capitals in the region. A curiosity was discovering many people sucking at their mate tea filled pumpkins or calabazas.Apart from that, there was some talk of the Uruguayan carnival with its typical Candombe music style coming up soon after Christmas. Carnival engaged many young people in activities. Our democracy supporting projects were useful in Montevideo.
At the factory FUNSA Swedish labour movement support had helped start a child care centre with 45 kids and 16 employees. ABF in Gotland through Stig Söderling supported this important investment.
Our next visit took us to Paso Carrasco where young people presented a Murga (a carnival musical presentation) outside their Casa del Pueblo. This was a meeting places very much shaped as Swedish Folketshus that were so important for the Swedish labour movement. Jörgen Eklund, Gunnar Falk and Maine Westin were pleased with what they saw and would even be more pleased at our final destination-Chile.

Buenos Aires blues

 

plaza de mayo

Following a short touch down in São Paulo the delegation went on to Buenos Aires, the capital of Argentina. The years of terror were over but not the memories attached to them. We contacted several people that were involved in projects financed by the Swedish International Labour Mouvement Centre (AIC). I recall a project run by women that provided legal aid for women that needed this help. We tried to perceive what the political situation really was like and it was clear that the Socialist ideas and commitment were weak after the Dirty War and the Peronist Mouvement, still strong among Trade Union leaders. The situation in that month of December 1989 stayed very much on my awereness as a time when the mothers of the Plaza de Mayo still had reason to demonstrate in order to find out what had happened to their disappeared relatives.

Accounts from the “Commission on the disappeared”,show that during the Dirty War (Guerra sucia)  some 11000 people were documented as killed on an all out war led by the army against anyone showing left sympathies.Many more undocumented casualties fell during this period of war, that lasted between 1976 and 1983. The three most important military presidents were Videla, Viola and Galtieri. This last one meeting the end of the military era after defeat at the war on the Falkland Islands.

I had a chance to meet some of the many hundreds of women that were known as The mothers of the Plaza de Mayo. They carried on with yearly demonstrations outside the presidential palace- Casa Rosada- until 2006. Most of those sons and daughters would never be recovered or their fate known.

Buenos (2)

On this picture beside myself, Maine Westin, Malin Olsson and José Goñi ( currently Chile ambassador in Washington).

 

South America- 1989 AD

Guarulhos metal

In the beginning of 1989 I engaged myself in recruiting new contributors to the International fund (Ifonden). This fund was administered by the AIC – International Labour Movement Centre. Later this Centre would be renamed after party leader Olof Palme who was gunned down in Stockholm in 1986.

I was so successful in recruiting new contributors to the fund that I was invited to accompany a delegation from the member organizations of the Centre, to visit projects in South America that were financed and supported by the fund. Fortunately for me this was a special time in South America as dictatorships were giving way to democratic governments. We would be there in the middle of it all, culminating as it were, with the presidential election that would replace Augusto Pinochet’s 16 years in power.

We departed on the 2nd December and our first stop would be São Paulo in Brazil. As most people know this huge city is heavily industrialized so it was natural that the trade Unions of Sweden helped their Brazilian counterparts and I remember visiting the Metal Union in Guarulhos.

There was a lot of excitement and sober optimism as the ex-metal worker Luiz Inácio (Lula) da Silva was a presidential candidate. The first round had been on the 15 th November and Lula would contest the second round on the 17 th December against conservative candidate Collor de Mello. De Mello did win but Lula would also become president of Brazil in 2003. Brazil was not ready then for a president that had always fought from the bottom of society starting to work at 12 as a shoeshiner, before getting employment in the São Paulo industry.

The AIC member organizations are connected with Swedish Labour movement. These include more than Trade Unions. On the South American trip Trade Unions were well represented. For the record here they are:  Tuve Bergman from the Commerce Workers Union (Handels), Stig Söderling from the Central Trade Union (LO), Ronny Olsson-Municipal Workers (Kommunal), Yngve Vikström-Construction Workers (Byggnads) and Birgitta Johansson from Transport Union.

The immense city of São Paulo, larger than many countries found me waking up on the very early hours of the morning to discover enormous traffic jams outside the hotel. That is also a memory I keep.

On the picture above we can see Edmilsson Nery and Chicão from Steel Workers Union in Guarulhos. On the background Gunnar Falk.