|La mujer que acompaño a Vicente de Ametzaga Aresti|
the port of La Guaira at nightfall and our first stop was the port of Curacao.
The arrival at the port of Curacao was surprising because the ship entered the
port passing near a row of picturesque houses of different colors. We learned
the meaning of the name of the island. Curacao means "healing island"
because when ships came to port with sailors suffering from scurvy, they were
cured by eating the delicious fruit that the island offers. Our second and last
port was Aruba before coming to Houston, Texas. It was a happy eight-day trip
across the Caribbean Sea dotted with islands and then into the wider Gulf of
Mexico. Taking a Caribbean cruise is exciting and memorable when you look over
the Caribbean Sea and more if it is on your honeymoon. They were happy days and
Bob and I enjoyed them greatly.
planting new roots, many of us find our minds wandering through the seas to the
mountains or the valleys of the land of our parents or the land they left behind
in other pilgrimages. Someone said that the sea can be a psychological boundary
that protects us from hidden wounds and bitter memories. Our parents sailed the
same waters that were battlefield in innumerable wars of German submarines
destroying and sinking Allied ships.
was living my experience as an immigrant for the fourth time in 27 years.
Arguably, I was a "citizen of the world." It
meant to pack suitcases, say goodbye to loved ones, reach unknown lands, hear a
strange language, learn one’s way around a new city, adapt to new customs and
idioms, and change radically all these things I experienced as a child, youth and
adult. All these moves have their pros and cons. It
really gives us a different view, makes us more open minded and adaptable, and
integrates heart and soul into the society we live in.
And it makes it easier to understand other minds and cultures.
But all of this it entails great expense, which is to lose one’s
Saturday, September 24, we slowly entered the Houston Channel and arrived at the
inland port of Houston, Texas. The
port is 40 kilometers from the Gulf of Mexico, and only one kilometer from the
city center. Bob's sister and her family hosted us generously. In Houston
we enjoyed great breakfasts which were really rather brunch including pancakes
and syrup. Three days later we began traveling from Houston to Washington in
eight days. We
covered the states of Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama.
We continued our honeymoon by spending several days in the beautiful city
of New Orleans. We
crossed the Mississippi River into Alabama and visited a friend of Bob’s from
graduate school and his wife. In
Atlanta Georgia, we strolled through the heart of the south, where they filmed
"Gone with the Wind." We crossed South Carolina, and in North Carolina
celebrated Bob’s birthday on the road.
Finally we came to Virginia, the southern capital, at noon which we
crossed in three hours. And finally we came to Washington, that evening I
will never forget.
the center of the city we had to cross the Potomac River on one of the many
bridges that add special fascination to Washington. We crossed the bridge that
offers the greatest view of the city because it is lined with American
patriotism that tells us we are entering the capital, the Memorial Bridge. We
stayed in a hotel and the next morning before leaving to look for a home I
described in a long letter to my parents and siblings all my thoughts, joys and
soon found and settled in a beautiful, tiny apartment in a downtown neighborhood
near Johns Hopkins University where Bob was a student. The
small apartment had a lovely sofa that converted into a bed at night. Two
large windows were decorated with mustard-colored curtains and the sofa was
upholstered in blue and cream, with chairs and tables in French style. The
living-room fireplace warmed us in the winter and the rest of the apartment
included two closets, a small desk, old, large kitchen with huge closet and a
happy bathroom that the sun bathed through a large window. It was very well
located in terms of cultural education of American life and entertainment, as it
was only a few blocks from the White House, the Capitol, many museums of various
kinds, the National Gallery of Art with its concert halls where attended on
weekends, majestic monuments, and Library of Congress, the oldest cultural input
in the United States that serves as the research institution for Congress, and
is one of the largest libraries in the world. We were also near the Washington
Monument, an obelisk made of white marble, 185 meters tall, on the ground of the
and I tried to break the record by climbing the 897 steps of the iron stairs in
20 minutes. But we failed as the record to climb to the observation deck
was 6 minutes and 42 seconds. We were also close to the historic Cathedral of
Saint Matthew, a huge church, with an exterior like the churches in Italy, made
of red bricks that contrasted with the interior richly decorated with marble and
semiprecious stones. The confessionals were marked by flags to indicate the
different languages in which confessions were offered. I went to Mass every
Sunday, and Bob was always with me.
Ama liked that.
the beginning of spring dresses up Washington with the cherry blossoms. We went
for a walk through the flowery path one Sunday morning; although it was a bit
cold, the show was lovely. This is an annual celebration of the blooming of 3000
cherry trees Japan gave to Washington in 1912 as a memento of the friendship
between Japan and the United States. People around the world gather here to
welcome the arrival of spring.
4, Independence Day of United States from the Kingdom of Great Britain and
aita's birthday, is celebrated on the banks of the Potomac River with millions
of kilos of explosions that are thrown into the air in what is the biggest
firework display in the world. To attend these festivals there are large
discounts on airfares, hotels, package tours, restaurants and shopping centers.
Bob and I had a picnic after a short walk to witness the time the sky was filled
parents came from London where his father worked as a petroleum geologist,
directing the search for oil in the North Sea. They came to Washington and
stayed with us for a week. We tried speaking in Spanglish and got it right most
were very nice people and really treated me with affection. It was an exciting
year for us. There were so many things to do and see. I was excited to share all
these experiences of this exciting city with my parents and siblings. Our
parents were excited about what I told them and they wanted to come to visit
soon. Aita unfortunately could never do it.
Ama came four years later and we were able to show her the places that I
had described in letters.
aita had promised to teach Bob Euskera by correspondence so he began to prepare
and send the classes, and ama accompanied the lessons with drawings that she
designed. For Bob it was very easy to learn the language faster in the little
time that classes lasted.
June, 1966, Bob graduated from Johns Hopkins with a Ph.D. in International
Relations and immediately the army called him to do two years of service. The
first year he was assigned to Walter Reed Military Hospital in Washington. The
shadows of war that I sensed in our wedding came true on a beautiful April
morning in 1967 when Bob received his orders to go to Vietnam. The Vietnam War
was a war whose origin was the determination of the Communist guerrillas (the
so-called Vietcong) in South Vietnam, supported by North Vietnam to overthrow
the South Vietnamese government. The confrontation led to a war in both
countries which soon became an international conflict when the U.S. and over 40
other countries supported South Vietnam and Russia and China furnished munitions
to North Vietnam and the Vietcong. In this bloody war some 57,685 U.S. troops
were killed; 153,303 injured; and 2,500 were missing in action.
could delay his departure a little because our first child would be born soon.
But sadly the person appointed to replace him during that time was killed in an
sent me some beautifully made clothes for our new baby. She wanted to be with me
in these important moments of our lives, but it could not be.
first child Anne Miren was born happily on an important date, July 7, 1967, the
day of San Fermin, an important celebration for all of Navarre.
She was born in the most famous hospital in Washington, at Walter Reed
Army Medical Center. This major hospital was named in memory of Walter Reed, who
was in charge of a team which confirmed that yellow fever was transmitted by
mosquitoes and not by direct contact.
As a result of this important discovery not only did he save many lives,
but also made it possible to carry out the construction of the Panama Canal. The
nurses were very curious to know where I had bought such elegant clothes that
Anne Miren wore upon leaving the hospital.
year 1967 was a year of triumphs with the births of the first two children and
grandchildren and challenges with the departure of Bob to Vietnam and Pello
imprisoned for attending an Aberrieguna (Basque patriotic celebration; banned at
the time in Spain) with a camera.
Saturday, July 29, at 8:00 pm the city of Caracas was shaken by an earthquake,
known as "Earthquake Cuatricentenario of Caracas” since the city
celebrated in those days its first four centuries. At the moment ama was cooking
squid for lunch the next day, while my father worked at his desk.
Ama felt the movement but thought she was a little dizzy, until she saw
the chandelier in the dining room moving from side to side and realized it was
an earthquake. She called to our father who seems not to have noticed, and there
in the living room the two held each other until it ended.
When all was calm they hurried down the ten floors out with the other
neighbors on the street. Later they heard on the radio the sad news. The
neighborhoods of Altamira, Los Palos Grandes and the central part of the coast
were the hardest hit by the quake. Bingen and Xabier were unharmed and assisted
in the rescue work. Pello and Arantza ran to their home in Los Palos Grandes
where they lived to find their child of six months.
He was with the nanny, and to get to their home they passed buildings of
six and ten floors that had been compressed to the height of a floor, but
luckily their building was standing and there on the street near his apartment
they found the boy in the arms of the mulatto woman who saved his life.
That night that began happily for many suddenly changed when everything
went dark and the earth shook. Happiness became pain and panic. The first quake
lasted 35 to 55 seconds and measured 6.5 on the Richter scale, but it was enough
for the terrified population to go out into the street like lost souls; and more
than 400 inhabitants of Caracas and the coast died. There were thousands of
casualties and incalculable material damage. In the center of the city, the
Patriarchal Cross of the Cathedral of Caracas broke off from the top of the
church and tradition says when it fell down the earthquake stopped; and as
testimony to that fact its mark is recorded on the floor. A
few weeks later I got a letter from ama with details of the earthquake and the
sad news of the death of Basque friends when the building they lived in
I just arrived home from the hospital with my baby in my arms and began my
arduous task of being a sweet mother without any help except what Bob could do
when he came home from work. We did not have any family around to celebrate her
arrival or to ask for advice or assistance. Bob
had gotten a woman to help me clean the house. She was a tall, slender black
woman who wore hat and gloves.
After greeting me and the baby ceremoniously, she went singing around the
house cleaning. I
could relax to the sound of quiet songs of the mulatto with my daughter asleep
in the white bassinet that I had lined with tulle from my wedding veil.
15 days we baptized Anne in the English style gray stone Memorial Chapel at
Walter Reed. We
had a little party where we invited Perico Beitia, the Basque government
delegate in Washington, Yaione Bilbao and husband who were visiting the city,
and some friends of ours. A few days we packed up and the three of us went to
Houston, Texas, where Anne Miren and I planned to live near Bob's family during
the absence of Bob after he left for Vietnam. Bob with his new Ph.D. would ow be
responsible for planning and coordinating the security of caravans and trucks
carrying medicine, food and ammunition. Our farewell was very sad, both
of us crying with our newborn between us.
months later my in-laws invited me to visit them in Bogota, Colombia, one of the
highest cities in the world, 2640 meters above sea level, and also one of the
largest in Latin America. This city offers a contrast between the houses of rich
colonial heritage and modern buildings and is surrounded by huge Andean
mountains. On the streets you see people clothed with dark-colored ponchos that
make them look more dramatic. We
were staying in the Hotel Residence Tequendama, located in the center of the
spent a month with them in Bogota during which we made many purchases. We
visited the "Quinta Bolívar" in honor of Simon Bolivar, a beautiful
house, beautiful gardens, with a mosaic floor made of sheep bones. We
went to Mass at the Church of San Diego, then at the Copper Museum nearby where
we saw exhibits of thousands of objects of copper. Seeing these copper utensils,
I thought of the typical rustic Basque cuisine and I cannot remember
where, but we bought ten copper items for cooking and to decorate our kitchen. We
bought ponchos and jewelry made with emeralds.When we had finished our
stay my in-laws joined us on the trip from Bogota to Caracas to meet my parents
and siblings. Anne
Miren and I spent five months in Caracas.
arrived at Maiquetía airport and the whole family was waiting. My
in-laws after a delicious dinner prepared by ama went to rest at the Hotel
Tamanaco where they were staying, and the next day they came to our home. My
father-in-law and I went to the U.S. Embassy to report my new address and
Meanwhile my parents and my mother-in-law stayed at home and they
understood each other very well with my father as translator. At night they
invited the whole family to dinner at the Hotel Tamanaco. I
could not stay because Anne Miren never stopped crying and my good father-in-law
took both of us home. Ama told me it went very well and our parents
personally liked Bob's parents very much.
of the first things ama, my daughter and I was to visit the ruins of the fallen
houses during the earthquake. It
had been five months in Caracas, and even though the streets were damaged,
buildings were dilapidated, and there were vacant lots where once there were
buildings, everyone seemed calm as they waited for Christmas. At home aita was
speaking fondly in Basque to Anne Miren. Ama was delighted to make
dresses for her and take her for walks.
very kind to us but I could not fully enjoy the visit because they were bad
moments for me thinking about Bob and the Vietnam War where we never seemed to
hear very good news. In April 1968 we could not wait any longer and returned to
Houston to await the return of Bob. Before I left, aita gave me a copy of
his recently published book which he dedicated to me.
The title was The Basque Man. I was filled with pride and I did
not expect it. Again and sadly we said goodbye.
the eve of our daughter’s first birthday, Bob returned from Vietnam. We
celebrated in style with the whole family.
I called Caracas to report the good news.
They had already offered
him his first job was in Bryan, Texas, a university town two hours north of
there were real cowboys, they had exciting rodeos and its inhabitants were very
was a small charming village, but it lacked the cultural or entertainment events
offered by cities such as Washington or Houston. I think because of that, we had
parties all the time, and almost all songs we sang were nostalgic college songs
accompanied by Bob on guitar, a musical instrument that I had purchased as a
gift from Don Disco, in the Chacaito neighborhood of Caracas. In this
environment, Bob began his teaching career, and the three of us pursued family
life had been interrupted by separation due to war.
remember that I told ama what we did in this town of Bryan, and she wrote that
after my tumultuous year to travels to Bogota and Caracas, and Bob’s to
Vietnam, she advised me to take advantage of the peace of this small town and
take the time
to restore our lives to normal. And she was right.
in these moments the tranquility of a small town.
few weeks into my second pregnancy Bingen informed us from Caracas that our
father was going to the University Hospital for x-rays.
He became dizzy and was hospitalized. They
found him anemic and gave him a blood transfusion. Bingen
got in touch with the gastroenterologist to view the x-rays and it was diagnosed
as probable carcinoma of the stomach. After several transfusions he
recovered enough to perform a laparotomy to make a definite diagnosis. Bingen
was upbeat and told me not to worry, but unfortunately it was stomach cancer
with liver metastases. A week after the operation he had a complication,
peritonitis, renal failure and died in full awareness and without pain. I
was five weeks pregnant and had had a miscarriage several months earlier so I
could not travel to see and be near him one last time. Begoña
arrived in Caracas days before the operation to be next to her father before he
died and got to know and embrace him.
did not expect such a tragic end.
She wrote some letters that were very painful and difficult for me to
read and I felt very sad about being so far away to offer my support and love.
Xabier wrote me that he took her for walks and for trips, which she had
always liked. They
even made excursions into the Venezuelan jungle, visited the Venezuelan Andes
and he also took her to eat one of their favorite delicacies, the almond cake in
Colonia Tovar (a Venezuelan tourist site), and other excursions.
For these trips all she had was to do was enjoy the scenery and food, and
she enjoyed going with them ama told me in all her letters.
She wrote of these adventures with excitement. Bingen told me that he also took her to the cinema to
see "Fantasia" by Walt Disney, which she really liked. Our two
brothers and Arantza were able to be support for our mother in those difficult
these trips Xabier took ama in a German Werchmacht jeep from the German armed
forces in World War II.
It had no doors and a canvas roof that let the noise in from everywhere.
I called it "The Tank" but according to Xabier it was a work of
engineering masterpiece and he proudly took her everywhere, even driving once to
father in-law had taken me two years earlier to the Houston Space Center where
they control all space facilities and which serves as a NASA astronaut training
was an interesting tour that impressed me. Now
on a hot July morning sitting in front of our recently acquired first color
television set, we saw the space launch of Apollo 11 from Cape Canaveral.
Four days later, on July 20, 1969 the first human landed on the moon. On
July 24, they landed in the Pacific Ocean. It only took eight days to go
to the moon and return.
Neil Armstrong, the commander of the lunar module. When
stepping on the moon famously said "This is one small step for man, one
giant leap for mankind."
Anne Miren had just turned two and did not understand what happened and
we waited until night to point out the moon and describe to her what happened,
but she was not as impressed as we wanted.
I wrote to our mother telling her about this event and she said
she thought how aita would have enjoyed watching this unparalleled event.
invited our mother to Texas to be with us for the birth of our second child and
she did so. She came several weeks before birth, in time to put the finishing
touches on clothes that neatly sewn for the crib and the baby. Kathleen
was born on the saint’s day of Las Mercedes, the ama’s patron saint,
September 24, 1969. She
shared her room with the newborn that we decorated it together.
She felt a lot of affection for the little girl.
She attended her day and night to let us rest and so I could be
more with Anne Miren, and her caring for the newborn soothed her aching spirit.
We baptized her in the oldest church
Bryan, Saint Joseph’s (1873), with the name of Kathleen Elizabeth, names of
family members of Bob.
months later my in-laws invited us to visit and stay with them a few days in the
city of Corpus Christi, Texas, the "Sparkling City by the sea", 443
kilometers from Bryan. At
that time they resided in this city. I
was a little worried about invading the house with the five of us, and more with
a newborn, but between ama and Bob they encouraged me.
Ama was treated royally, and she was very grateful for the
attention from my in-laws.
let her have the master bedroom with private bathroom, the girls occupied one
bedroom and we the other, while my in-laws sleeping in a small room adjacent to
the living room.
Ama told me "I do not think aita would have given someone else our
mother-in-law liked that ama was so witty; such as when ama invented a way to
walk our daughter since we had not brought the stroller for Kathleen.
She got her baby seat from the car, and put it on top of a serving table
with wheels, and thus took her for a walk outside.
said "necessity is the mother of invention." The truth is that ama had
a good time even though we did not go to many places.
and I prepared for a weekend visit to New Orleans, six hours away. Ama offered
to take care of the girls. We
stayed at the Provincial Hotel located in the French Quarter, the oldest sector
of the city. We'd been there on our honeymoon and we liked it for its
quiet, simple elegance, and because it was very well located, close to
everything. In the nineteenth century it had been the convent of the Ursuline
Sisters, and then was converted into a military hospital during the Battle of
New Orleans and later during the civil war. Upon
arrival at the hotel called to make sure everything was okay. Ama and
Anne Miren spoke a bit and everything seemed in order. The
next night we called again and this time the line was busy; even after half an
hour was the same. We knew that none of the three could talk much on the
phone, or more precisely, not at all; and we called the neighbor and in Spanish
spelled a message to give to ama. We
called and ama answered. The phone had been off the hook because Anne
Miren thought I was on the line all the time.
She missed us and her consolation was the phone. This
episode made me think sadly back to my childhood because I was her age when our
mother left us and went to Marseille. And we returned home.
was offered a good job,
the post of head of the department of political science at the University of
Tennessee at Chattanooga.
He accepted it and we left his family behind in texas. It
made us a little sad because in this new city we did not know anyone. The
city of Chattanooga is along the two sides of the Tennessee River and surrounded
by the Appalachian Mountains. We
rented an apartment in an historic region in the neighborhood of the top of
Signal Mountain, so named because the first inhabitants, the Cherokee Indians,
from the top of this mountain sent smoke signals through the valley. The
mountain has an altitude of 600 meters and offers a unique panoramic view, but
has a very narrow road with many curves and does not inspire much night driving
safety. One month later we bought our first house, down in the suburbs of
the city. The region offers a picturesque setting. The
city is very urban but in the mountains the culture revolves around the arts,
music and folk crafts.
in such a picturesque city, I decided to take correspondence courses in Interior
Decoration offered by La Salle University, and learn to choose the right colors
to decorate our home and develop my creativity. With each lesson we transformed
the rooms starting with the entry and ending with the girls’ rooms. As
soon as I had graduated, Bob helped me in this project and I ended up changing
our whole house. I've
always wanted our home to reflect our tastes and personalities. Some time
later, ama upholstered a chair for us, perhaps as a show of support for our
1972, Bob worked as a coordinator in the state of Tennessee in the election
campaign of Senator George McGovern for president. For a few months we were very
phone kept ringing until late at night and by day we organized and we went to
parties for fundraising.
There were countless trips to give talks, meet politicians and finally to
be a delegate to the Convention in Miami,
could not attend. Ama
eagerly followed closely the political career of Bob and sent him a drawing of a
donkey in support.
She sent me a gold pendant for bracelet, a donkey, a symbol of the
1973 we traveled to Euskadi to show Bob the country that we had talked about so
that time ama was living with Arantza, Pello and their three children in
Pamplona. Since aita died she divided her time between Caracas, Euskadi
and the U.S. On
our wedding day, she promised me she would write once a week and she did so
she wrote her letters more often.
In the first week of July we spent a few days to visit Pamplona.
Miren was convinced that in Pamplona the fiesta and fun were celebrating her
birthday. And the place that we most enjoyed was the pastry shop. During
our time Bob made a number of interviews with people in the Basque underground
struggle that later become part of his first book about Basque politics. Most of
the interviews were made possible thanks to the intervention of ama through her
contacts with politicians in Euskadi.
had never lived in this city known worldwide for the famous festival of San
insisted we should go to witness the running of the bulls, which consists of a
three-minute run before the bulls, culminating in the bullring. She woke
us up early to be sure that what we did it.
arrived before the first rocket launch (txupinazo) and climbed up to a window of
a bank so we could experience the risk and excitement of these popular events
immortalized by Ernest Hemingway in his novel "The Sun Also Rises."
able to take the girls and their cousins to see the parades of giants and
cabezudos, carnival figures known as I had told them many times. With some
trepidation they watched passing in front of us the giant figures representing
different races of the world and the “big heads” that chased the children
shouting and running. But we could not stay to attend the final night. On the
14th San Fermin officially ends and everyone meets in the plaza across from City
Hall and holding ligted candles sadly sing the song "Poor me."
to Euskadi and our stay there were very good and productive for all.
We were happy we did it. Two years later ama came to be with us for a
while. At this time we lived in Chattanooga, Tennessee. She arrived a few weeks
before the birth of our third child, who was born December 24, 1974, with all
happiness. When he was born the doctor told us that the child's life was in
danger because he was suffering from severe anemia associated with Rh factor.
They were thinking about giving him a complete blood transfusion.
Like many Basques (30-40 percent), I have Rh- blood.
Among Basques, the Rh factor is absent to a high degree.
Robert was born with Rh+ and he suffered from a condition called
They put him under a blue light for 10 days.
It was not necessary to give him a transfusion; it seems that he was
saved because he was so robust since he weighed 4 kilos, 200 grams.
Ama called him “aizkolari,” a Basque word for weight lifter.
After one month the baby was baptized Robert Vincent in honor of his
father and his two grandfathers.
He was baptized in St. Jude Catholic Church in Chattanooga.
months after ama left we were in full summer.
The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga where Bob was a professor gave
its annual picnic, in the house of the Chancellor, which is located on the banks
of the Tennessee River, close to the enormous hydroelectric plant, Chickamauga
we arrived, the place impressed us with its majestic house and beautiful garden
along the river with a rapid current, an impressive panaroma typical of this
and the girls went to play with their ball and I stayed with Robert (eight
months) in his carriage.
Several minutes later neither the carriage nor the baby was beside me
because it had started to roll down a hill to the river.
Instinctively I looked toward the river and in that instant I could see
the carriage overturned and my baby thrown into the river.
I ran desperately calling for help to attract the attention of those
did not see the baby, but I put my arms under the water near the carriage and by
miracle I grabbed him.
He began to cry at once, a cry that seemed to us a sweet melody.
I was trembling from the shock and since Robert had a small bump on his
head we hurried to the pediatrician.
When our mother learned of the accident she baptized our son Moses (saved
from the waters).
returned a few months later and was with us six months.
This time she came because I was hospitalized for a week to have a series
of tests when I suffered by a loss of balance and partial loss of hearing.
They diagnosed me with hipoacusia, partial loss of hearing capacity,
without discovering the cause.
When they put me in the hospital, the first thing I did was call Bingen
and we talked about the problem.
When we told ama all of this, she was worried because she was afraid of
all its consequences, since I was only 37 years old.
Aita had suffered all his life, and experienced tinnitus (ringing in the
ears), a constant noise in one ear that made it practically impossible for him
to understand conversations in meetings or parties where there were a large
number of people.
Ama knew how frustrating this was for him.
And I would suffer the same thing from this point on.
Besides being physically challenging and provoking stress, it meant I
would be the rest of my life with a diminished capacity to perceive sounds in a
conversational and noisy environment as well as an inability to locate where
sounds came from.
But I did not lose hope, and I repeated to ama one of the most cited
phrases from the Bible: “Be not afraid.”
I think this calmed her a little bit.
The loss of my hearing was the same day that Franco died, November 20,
recalled “Montezuma’s revenge,” for the “bad time” that a tourist has
when he eats spicy food in Mexico.
I recovered rapidly and ama and I soon began to make our plans.
In the mornings we would have a regular daily routine.
Very early in the morning ama finished preparing the night’s supper,
and we usually left the house at 10:00 am until lunch time.
Usually I took her to shopping centers, which is what she liked most.
How she enjoyed it.
In the afternoons, after taking a nap she had a cup of coffee and thus
refreshed she was ready for what lay ahead.
Most of the time we eere in the backyard with the children or we did the
household chores like sewing or knitting.
At night some times we played cards.
Sundays we went to Mass, and then Bob would take us on an excursion to
see something new.
We decided to visit the nation’s capital and so the six of us went to
Washington for one week.
We visited the most important buildings like the White House, the
Capitol, the Library of Congress, and several of the museums that I had written
her about years earlier.
for us, ama had to return to Caracas.
She got along very well with the children, and I had time to talk with
her about many things long forgotten.
She promised us show would return for another visit in a year.
Every time she came she brought books, records and dolls for girls, which
she dressed as she had done in our infancy.
I) Vida de Mercedes Iribarren de Ametzaga -Gure Ama - Tributo a nuestra Ama, por Mirentxu Ametzaga
II) La mujer que acompaño a Vicente de Ametzaga Aresti - por Xabier I. Ametzaga
III) Mis manos quieren hablar - mi poema a mi Ama - por Xabier I. Ametzaga
IV) Publicaciones en Internet relacionadas
Ametzaga Aresti - His Biography and his works Published on Wikipedia
Mercedes Iribarren Gorostegui - La mujer que acompaño a Vicente de Ametzaga - published on Wikipedia
Xabier Iñaki Ametzaga Iribarren - Information published on Wikipedia