Saturday, 13 November 2010

Circular No 471

Newsletter for alumni of The Abbey School, Mt. St. Benedict, Trinidad and Tobago, W.I. 
Caracas, 13 of November 2010 No.471
Dear Friends, 
Here are a couple emails from Tim Mew.
Tim Mew MHC
26 ago 2010 
Hi Nigel,
Your work is much appreciated and it must take a very long time to produce these spread sheets.
I really do not know what will happen to MSB Old Boys when you and Ladislao have to give up this kind work.
Perhaps it is better not to think about it and to hope you persevere for a very long time yet.
I will go through ASAP and see if I have any new information for you.
However have already saved it in my HD and Desktop.
Cheers Tim.
 ----- Original Message -----------------------------------------------------------
I'm pleased to be able to welcome Desmond Smith into our little group.
It turns out that he was probably the first "Old Boy" of what was to become, in 1943, the "Abbey School".
Ladislao has documented Des' comments in his latest Circular #458.
I also have to record the death of Renny Villafana, who passed away a few days ago. May he rest in peace. Here's what Angela Pidduck, journalist, had to say about Renny:
“Renwick Harlan Villafana, known as “Renny”, a most affable man, recently passed away at age 55. A funeral service was held at Jesus Elam Revival Assembly International in Barataria, followed by cremation at the St James Crematorium. He was born in Aruba and brought to Trinidad at age five by his parents, from which time Renny learned to accept challenges as he was flung head first into a new language, new culture and new world, all of which he avidly embraced. 
Knowing only Papiamento, the language of the Netherlands Antilles and a smattering of Dutch, learning English was his first challenge. At age 12 Renny became a boarder at the Abbey School run by the Dutch priests, facing another challenge of separation from his parents and younger brother. He surmounted this, excelled in sports, honed his leadership skills, and was proud to be an Abbey boy. With a strong Roman Catholic background, Renny served as an acolyte in his St James parish church for many years. 
On leaving school, Renny threw himself into the family’s medical supply business with the same passion that he attacked everything else in his life. And when with his wife they started the home care centre, the Villafana reputation for excellence, quality and service continued to grow throughout the hospitals and nursing homes in Trinidad and Tobago. 
It was important to Renny to continue to search for ways to be on the cutting edge of the health care field. He had the knack for finding anything, and it was common knowledge that if you could not find a product anywhere, check at Villafana’s.”
Nigel Boos
Tim Mew MHC
3 ene 2010
Hi Guys,
Some success at last for Michael Correia and you can now include him on your emails.

Hi Tim:
I saw Mike today & mentioned about MSB etc etc.
He said to give you his email!!!!   So here it is
You can take it from there.
I never see Maurice, so can’t promise anything there. 
Take care...Jan

Ladislao sorry about the use of the "wrong" email address.
I guess we should put the ring into the too hard basket, as Nigel also said it is a chore to collect $ and co-ordinate individuals.
Still it was an interesting thought,
...30 dic 2009
From: Tim Mew MHC  
Happy New Year.
May you and family have a truly wonderful 2010.
I have an idea which I would like to pass across you two guys first and then if accepted in principle, we may be able to take it further for broad approval.
I was thinking that for those MSB students who were interested, a ring featuring the Abbey School could be designed.
If worn everyone we met by purpose, accident or sheer co-incidence could recognize we were from various classes of Mt. St. Benedict.
Most universities have such a ring and if made of gold [14 ct] it could last a lifetime and be passed on to our children as a memento of our school days.
What do you think?
If it is too difficult in your opinion we could shelve it. However if and once we gained substantial acceptance from students, who would like to have and wear such a ring, we could then decide on the design and where to make it etc.
Some new thoughts for 2010 which may bring us closer together in a different way.
Ring in the New Year.
Re: Dalmatic Fund - Gifts for 24 Deacons
...28 sept 2009
From:   Tim Mew MHC
No problem and it will be easier to keep track of with fewer active bank accounts.,
Can you now send emails to any MSB students in Australia or Canada etc. that you know about and include the Canadian account details for contributions.
We can use direct deposit for these ex OZ.
Thanks for your kind work,
----- Original Message ------------------------------------------------------
From: Nigel Boos
Sent: Monday, September 28, 2009 9:41 PM
Subject: Dalmatic Fund - Gifts for 24 Deacons
That's fine with me, Tim. You know the position there better than I, and I accept what you say.
So we are agreed, then. No special account to be set up in OZ. Any contributions from down under to be sent directly to our existing account in Canada.
Thanks for the communication.
Re: Dalmatic Fund - Gifts for 24 Deacons
...27 sept 2009
From: Tim Mew MHC  
Hi Nigel,
I am OK to open an account in Melbourne for your suggestion, but wonder how many old MSB students are in OZ and willing to contribute.
I do not think many are here from the emails etc.
Would it not be better to send any contribution funds directly to you in Canada?
Please let me know and your ideas are very good and will be appreciated by the deacons to be.
Look forward to your advice,
Re: MSB Boys and Our Lives after Mount.doc
...sept 20 2009
From: Tim Mew MHC  
Hi Ladislao.
No problem and thanks for asking.
Here it is again for your use if you wish.
Will try to call you again one day soon on Skype.
----- Original Message -----------------------------------------
Sent: Monday, September 21, 2009 6:35 AM
Subject: Re: MSB Boys and Our Lives after Mount.doc 
Dear Timothy
Thank you the photos,
If you want to include the curriculum that you sent to Nigel, please resend it to me, and doing so you shall be paying your DUES (50 words) for the year.
Although Nigel keeps me informed, but sometimes information is misplaced.
God Bless
From: Tim Mew MHC <>
Sent: Sunday, September 20, 2009 1:33:51 AM
Subject: MSB Boys and Our Lives after Mount.doc 
Sorry I am running a bit late, but you know the old saying, "Better late than never".
Hope this is what you are after, so please let me know.
Tim Mew.
Class of 1958. 
This is just a reminder and a second request to those who have yet to respond.
I propose to issue a PowerPoint Presentation highlighting where the Old Boys of MSB are today, with a brief summary of our "Lives After Mount". I'm therefore inviting those who are interested to send in their photographs and summaries, if you'd like to be included. No rush, but I would like to get this done ASAP, as I've got other things on my plate.
I had earlier asked for submissions to be made by September 14th, and I'd like to hold to that date, if possible.
If anyone needs an extension of time, do let me know.
Here's the format I'm using. Feel free to drop you picture into the left side of the blank slide, and add some words of your own.
No pressure. This is just an invitation.
Kindest regards,
Nigel Boos 
Re: 1250 Boys
August 5 2009...
From: Tim Mew MHC  
Dear Nigel,
This is a fantastic piece of work, which must have taken you a long time to put together.
I have saved it and will one day print it out and give a copy to my five daughters and for their kids.
The pictures and paintings are great and the amount of information on Monks, teachers and students fantastic.
I must admit that at time of writing I have only touch on a part of it, but am looking forward to reading it all.
Many thanks and good work on behalf of all MSB boys ... now grown men!!!
Tim Mew.
PS: Also Ladislao 's account of his recent Trinidad visit was much appreciated and it is guys like you, who make things happen ... congrats.
Attached is a very recent photo of Gail & myself with our granddaughter Sophie Estelle at her baptism. 
----- Original Message ----------------------------------------------
Sent: Friday, July 31, 2009 10:42 PM
Subject: 1250 Boys 
About 2 years ago, I prepared a PowerPoint presentation entitled "1050 Boys" in which I tried to pull together a series of photographs, anecdotes, quotations, and memories which we as a group could share and enjoy.
Today, the list of old Boys of the Abbey School has expanded to 1250, as one by one, the Old Boys keep sticking their heads out of the woodwork and open themselves up for us all to see.
Here now, is a revised presentation, incorporating many of the photographs you've already seen, but also many more which have emerged since the first file was sent out.
I hope that you enjoy the show, and that you are able, once again, to relive those heady days we all enjoyed / endured as students of the Abbey School.
Nigel Boos 

Tim Mew MHC

Dear Ladislao,
First of all I wish I could join you in Trinidad and sincerely hope you have a fabulous trip filled with great memories.
Will any other MSB students from Venezuela join with you?
Gail and I will be away for a lengthy period on vacation in Italy and Turkey.
So during this period can you please not send any more emails for me, as I can always look back in the files.
We will be away from Friday May 15 to Friday June 19.
This will be much appreciated as no one will be here to clear the email in-box.
Some important emails may then be bounced, eg. Utility bills, Bank notices etc.
Thank you so much and God Bless al your good work,
Tim & Gail
PS: If I send you another as a general broadcast email to friends please understand.
_    Also I tried several times to reach Farcheg & De Fedak and others but with No Luck.
C'Est La Vie!!! 
Tim Mew
9 de febrero de 2009 21:46 
Thanks Nigel and I have emailed Fr. Cuthbert [hope he does not collapse with surprise!!!] to enquire about ordering some MSB books.
I can give a few as gifts to family and friends.
Guess you must have heard of all the fires in Australia, our state of Victoria and around Melbourne.
I am copying in an email I sent to my family for your info.
Cheers to you & Ladislao,
Tim [Mew]

“Hi to all,
Just an update for your information.
The official death toll is now around 175 and still expected to rise, as the grim task of going into devastated areas continues and the search for bodies in burnt out home and cars.
Even now the burnt land is still so hot and not easy to walk on or work in.
Needless to say the loss of animal life has also been severe, both farm animals, pets and bush life, eg. Koalas.
The fire front was sometimes as high as four or five story buildings and moving over 100 K's / hour. The fire balls were "spitting" 40 K's ahead of the fires and the embers & ashes were as if raining fire.
Now with this apparently quite different fire behaviour the news is "If you can see the flames it is too already too late", do not try to run away and if you have made plans in advance for the fire, stay inside and try to fight it and save the house, seems hard but either leave early or stay.
Many lives have been lost in cars as the evacuation was too late and the fire moved so fast.
Also some incredible stories of survival, with persons sheltering in Wombat holes, water dams or in large pipes running under creeks.
So a very bad scene and situation all around.
Melbourne is a very big city [some 4 m people] and quite spread out, so there were only fires in the outer suburbs and some evacuations required, eg. our daughter Alexandra in Upper Fern Tree Gully about 30 K's from the city centre had to leave in a hurry with her two kids and husband with their two dogs.
The other problem is that Melbourne [called the Garden City] has a huge number of trees, treed parks, grassed areas, gardens etc loaded with trees, shrubs and greenery ... all pretty dry by now!!!
The worst fires were about 1 - 2 - 3 hours drive from Melbourne, so not that far away.
There was huge concern that the fires would destroy the electricity power lines and one even threatened the huge Loy Yang Power station near to Traralgon about 1 1/2 hours drive away from Melbourne!!!
This week fires are still burning but the current temperatures are low in the mid - high 20 's, however they are expected to rise again.
So far no rain at all or even forecasted and Feb / Mar are both very hot months.
The last big fires called the "Ash Wednesday" fires were also in March., so not out of the woods so far in Victoria, South Australia and New South Wales.
Funnily enough [not humorous funny] is that in Northern Queensland there have been cyclones, severe flooding and huge amounts of rain.
Also very devastating for the people living there, with home and lives & livestock lost.
Very strange weather all around.
Love from us and all is well with our family.
Tim & Gail." 
Now to the photos. 
Ladislao Kertesz at,
08TM0003TMEWFE, Timothy Mew and Gail.
60NB0100GRA, Richard Galt
57IF0009AATGRP, Volleyball, with Azier Atela giving instructions.
09SC0023GRP, Reunion in Canada 2009

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