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A miracle every March,

Myers, Gail E

ISBN 10: 0811104966 / ISBN 13: 9780811104968
Published by Naylor Co
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Bibliographic Details

Title: A miracle every March,

Publisher: Naylor Co

Binding: Hardcover

Book Condition: Very Good

About this title

Synopsis:

Some sudden, unpredictable happening – it’s like a miracle -- rescues the dreary Mexican mountain village of La Vista from poverty each March. Listless villagers become spirited, hopeful, energetic, involved, and happy. But each “milagro” visits a tragedy on whichever resident appeared to cause it -- some personal loss – their pain lessened by compassionate caring of grateful fellow villagers. La Vista’s crumbling and dusty church, was abandoned to bats and pigeons half a century ago by the earthquake that sent the injured padre back to Vera Cruz and the bishops forgot La Vista. Undamaged was La Vista’s fieldstone general store which benign Gregorio later inherited from his father along with the legacy of presiding over lives of villagers from birth to death. Six years of miracles means Gregorio once again sells an occasional Collins machete along with increased daily trade in rice, beans, and masa, rope, boots, or whang leather. Visitors to the store daily in late February consult the town’s only calendar where Gregorio checks off days. What will the miracle be this year? Six years in a row – it can’t stop now. March is soon. Then one late afternoon, loungers on the shady well-worn benches outside Gregorio’s store watch a solitary rider descend the narrow rocky mountain trail, jerking hard at two overburdened pack burros. Three beasts and rider make a weary procession across the weed-grown village plaza to the store. Gregorio had been summoned from his siesta. A crowd of villagers began to assemble. Gregorio shook the hand of a painfully dismounting young rider and said “welcome to La Vista.” They talked while villagers kept a discreet distance, straining to hear. They learned this young man was a teacher sent to start a school in La Vista where nobody remembers they’d ever had one. Then villagers querying and derisively whispered among themselves those overheard words “el maestro” and ‘una escuela” but not a person ever said “milagro”. The young teacher has his own secret. Never will he tell anyone that he was exiled to this remote impossibly dead-end assignment to get him out of the Capital -- punishment for inciting student riots in the city. His hopes are to survive comfortably as possible in this drab village preparing a school until the government’s funds get spent. Then late some night he’d quietly ride back to the Capital. In those first evening hours in La Vista, as he shook hands with villagers, El Maestro grew curious and concerned when so many asked him, “How can anybody eat reading and writing?”

About the Author:

Inspiration for this insightfully humorous and whimsical story came from the author's 1947 magazine assignment following the rugged Trail of Hernan Cortez, mostly on foot or burros, from Vera Cruz through still wildly primitive mountainous terrain to Mexico City. Gail Myers, a native of South Dakota, is also author of a coming-of-age novel "The Crying Room" on barnstorming dance band years, four widely adopted college communication text books, many free-lance magazine and journal articles. His extensive career in higher education included variously his teaching, deaning, and presidenting, in Iowa, Colorado, Illinois, Pennsylvania. He's professor emeritus from Trinity U (Texas). Retired national consultant in organizational behavior based in Ohio, he now lives in historic Jacksonville, Oregon. His fictional Mexican village of La Vista is typical of so many other misnamed and poor isolated villages whose residents exist uneasily on a narrow edge of poverty. Then suddenly one year "miracles" started happening which brought a full year of prosperity. He writes with sensitive insight into the inner natures of natives who helped -- or hindered -- his tramping the Conquest's 300 slogging miles. Myers populated his fictional village with a wide range of honestly drawn and believable persons. This makes his very imaginative miracles feel like they were happening to those characters who he put on his pages in sincere understanding and deep affection for so many hardscrabble farmers, woodcutters, charcoal roasters, widows, herders, traders, gamblers, and even those gentle "sin verguenza" he met while trailing Cortez.

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