The journalist from Tenerife Juan Cruz yesterday opened the program of the May festivities with the reading of a proclamation in which he made a trip to the city of his adolescence, where he came to see the doctors accompanied by his mother from his native Puerto de la Cruz. A city that, recalled the journalist, has been the destination of multiple well-known travelers, who at different times ended up being surprised by some and others falling in love with a city that grew and grows facing the sea.
In Juan Cruz’s proclamation, which he read in the church square of La Concepción before some 300 people, including the Minister of Health, Carolina Darias from the Canary Islands, there was room for names such as Arozena, Westerdahl, Pedro García Cabrera, Domingo Pérez Minik, or Cristino de Vera. But also for a Humboldt who wrote about Santa Cruz in his book Viaje a las Islas Canarias, a work from which Cruz admitted “I have copied a lot”.
Cruz also recalled in his speech the name of the “illustrious Basque novelist Ignacio Aldecoa”, whose relationship with the capital is unknown to many. “Santa Cruz may have missed reading that book to know that he owes a debt to Don José Arozena’s illustrious friend, as he does to Humboldt.” Godo’s Notebook is the title of the book in which Aldecoa approached Santa Cruz attracted by what Arozena and Pérez Minik told him.
And he focused the final part of his speech on a name with which the city also has a debt, which perhaps, as he himself pointed out, is close to being paid. It is about the poet, architect and Cervantes Prize winner Joan Margarit, who loved Santa Cruz so much. “At that time, after meeting him and treating him as a friend who was also a chicharrero, I felt like a wound of time that there had been no sensitivity or occasion for Santa Cruz to consider that Margarit was one of his children. But life is like that, and memory also has those behaviors that we now deplore, but that, fortunately, the current Mayor’s Office is on the way to rectify, “said Cruz.
He said of Margarit that “among all the travelers who made Santa Cruz a stopover and inn, he was the one who was most sensitively involved in this island, which is the capital of Tenerife.” In addition, he added “that Margarit had the eyes of an islander and never stopped having that look to pay homage to the land in which he became a man.” The journalist and writer, and now the town crier of Santa Cruz, ended his intervention with the reading of the poem for the Cervantes Prize, The Mysterious Island.
The mayor of Santa Cruz, José Manuel Bermúdez, pointed out that “the May Festivities, so intimately linked to the birth of our city, represent the joy of those who celebrate life, an idiosyncrasy, the chicharrera, which draws on symbols that unite us and They represent us as a group. Symbols and traditions such as crosses, such as the flower show in the García Sanabria park or the great dance of magicians on the Island”.