Translated from the original by Ana Giménez. (14/3/2020)
Dear nieces and nephews:
One day I was alone at the beach, seated in my chair and contemplating the sea from the shore. One of you -I´m not sure you may remember- shouted at my back:
- Come, come quickly!
- Uncle Nicasio is looking at the whole without thinking about anything.
You came closer and there was great fun and laughter.
There are things I can never forget no matter how long ago it may have happened.
A while back, one of you told me it was normal that I could not make much money, as I didn´t know to do anything but talk. I didn´t either have any useful job. It´s true that I earn little money and you also know that I´m useless for practical things.
And as we can´t either see or kiss, I dedicate this letter to you in case any of you might be interested.
The very first thing I want to tell you is that I deeply love you and that I could maybe help you despite my limitations.
I remember the conversation I had -long ago- with one of you. The only one who came with me to the Home for AIDS patients; now she is married and committed to her career caring for children with problems.
When she was a teenager, she asked me once:
- Uncle, what do you think about me?
- You are really good looking, I answered.
- No, she said. What I´m asking is what do you think about me, deep inside.
I really think you are great, although I think you are missing a couple of things: to do something free for others and be within you.
Said and done. First thing was put immediately into practice. For a couple of summers or longer, she was a volunteer helping children who couldn´t afford holidays and would go to Cáritas summer camps.
That experience was really positive for her.
She had more difficulties with the second option. She said that she was afraid to be within her because thoughts of death or thoughts of things she didn´t like would arise .That´s why she had decided not to make that journey inward.
I urge you not to stop looking within you. Take advantage of this quarantine isolation at home, due to the coronavirus.
We will follow the advice given by the Greek, and Socrates in particular, “Know thyself”; and also in the Bible that through the prophets: Jeremiah, Ezekiel and Isaiah, who warn us about the need to change our heart.
We are not empty inside, love must flood our lives. Either you become humanists and you learn humanist values or you become Christians and you learn how to pray and how to love others imitating Jesus Christ. It is not easy to change from narcissistic selfishness to honest service for others.
Although there is a solution carried out by many of our citizens: to go to the supermarket and stock supplies of toilet paper out. I thought about it for a while and I have decided that I don´t want this for my nephews or nieces or for myself.
Life is a story of love. It´s very impressive to watch a video of a street in Naples while people standing outside their open windows and balconies, sing a famous song. Andrea Sannino, “Abbracciami”
I am uncle Nicasio (*) because no one pays much attention to me, but I´m sure someone will read me and even someone will be capable of being within him/her to discover their great beauty inside, along with certain poverties.
Last but not least, apart from my nieces and nephews I have another family of young people to whom I love deeply, to whom I consider members of my family and bear them in my heart. There are many and I don´t want to forget any of them. If anyone reads me, He (She) will know that He (She) is among them.
While I give you a virtual hug, I keep thinking about the idea of going to the supermarket to stock out the supplies of toilet paper myself. (laughs)
Signed: Uncle Nicasio
(*) This man´s name: Nicasio, sounds in Spanish like: ”no one pays attention to me” (Ni= no, caso= attention)