- 1. Ventura, did you bring some snuff?
- 2. They don't allow us to smoke.
- 3. Uncle...
- 4. The food sucks, no salt.
- 5. Ventura, don't forget your passport.
- 6. One never knows in a situation like this...
- 7. I thought you had emigrated,
to France, to Nice...
- 8. Those soldiers gave you a good beating.
- 9. Nobody likes me.
- 10. Not even the Armed Forces.
- 11. We're together through life and death.
- 12. Death doesn't scare me...
- 13. 'cause we will have our dues.
- 14. Remember our mates?
- 15. Delgado.
- 16. A typist.
- 17. He had a good family.
- 18. A good house in Zambujal.
- 19. One evening he finished his dinner,
tucked his sons into bed,
- 20. waited for his wife to fall asleep,
- 21. and then set the house on fire.
- 22. Never opened his mouth again.
- 23. Benvindo, your nephew Benvindo.
- 24. He suffered a lot from epileptic seizures.
- 25. He was stripping a construction site,
- 26. a beam fell on his head,
and he fell from the third floor.
- 27. He and his mate Daniel.
- 28. Daniel lay dead in the elevator shaft.
- 29. Lento.
- 30. Had to sell drugs
to make up his wages as a paver.
- 31. His boss treasured him.
- 32. The junkies always paid on time.
- 33. One day
he knifed a policeman in a raid.
- 34. They handcuffed him
and took him to the station.
- 35. Now he needs a shot every day
to calm his nerves.
- 36. Forever.
- 37. What will those soldiers do to us?
- 38. Nothing.
- 39. Our life will still be hard...
- 40. We'll keep on falling from the third floor.
- 41. We'll keep on being sliced
by the machines.
- 42. Our head and lungs
will continue hurting the same...
- 43. We'll be burned...
- 44. We'll go crazy...
- 45. It's all that mould
in the walls of our houses.
- 46. We've always lived and died this way...
- 47. This is our sickness.
- 48. If you don't kill me first
with your knife...
- 49. What is your name?
- 50. Ventura.
José Tavares Borges.
- 51. Do you know who brought you here?
- 52. The MFA brought me.
The revolutionary army.
- 53. Did you come of your own free will?
- 54. Has this happened to you before?
- 55. It will happen again, I know it will.
- 56. Can you describe
what happened to you?
- 57. It's because of the mould in our walls.
- 58. Where are you currently living?
- 59. In my shack in Fontainhas.
- 60. Do you sleep well?
- 61. Do you ever wake up
in the middle of the night?
- 62. A big black bird...
- 63. Appeared on my roof.
- 64. Where were you born?
- 65. Chão do Monte.
Águas Podres. Cabo Verde.
- 66. How old are you?
- 67. I am 19 and 3 months.
- 68. How did you get lost? Where?
- 69. Fontainhas...
- 70. Are you currently working?
- 71. Bricklayer. Retired.
- 72. Are you married? Any children?
- 73. Do you know who I am?
- 74. Do you know where we are?
- 75. I know a bunch of hospitals...
- 76. Miguel Bombarda,
- 77. Julio de Matos,
- 78. Santa Maria, Amadora.
- 79. Which season of the year are we in?
- 80. Springtime.
- 81. What date is it today?
- 82. March 11th, 1975.
- 83. Do you know who the president is?
- 84. Seems to be a guy General Spínola...
- 85. Did you go to school?
- 86. Are you able to read and write?
- 87. I hear a man crying.
- 88. Do you take any medication?
- 89. I used to shake a lot.
My boss took me off the scaffolding...
- 90. Are there any nerve-related diseases
in your family?
- 91. Are you aware of any illnesses
you may have?
- 92. I know my sickness.
- 93. Confess.
- 94. Vitalina from Figueira das Naus?
- 95. Ventura from Chão do Monte.
- 96. Are you here for treatments?
- 97. Visiting.
- 98. It happened on June 23rd, 2013.
- 99. My sister Isabel showed up
with heart-stopping news.
- 100. I rushed to Assomada
- 101. to get my visa and passport.
- 102. I was so confused, so lost.
I couldn't recognize anybody.
- 103. I couldn't even recognize myself.
- 104. My face was all disfigured.
- 105. I couldn't even take my photo
for the passport.
- 106. I was blind, I was numb.
- 107. In Praia, I bought an airplane ticket.
- 108. On the night of the flight I nearly died.
- 109. A policeman took me
to the stairs of the plane.
- 110. The air hostess took me by the arms
- 111. and showed me to my seat.
- 112. I was burning with fever.
- 113. The girls sat me down
and gave me two big pills.
- 114. They undressed me.
I was left in my nightclothes.
- 115. Miss Filomena, sitting next to me,
- 116. helped me to the toilet.
- 117. I couldn't pee.
- 118. Went back to my seat.
- 119. Had to pee again,
she took me back to the toilet.
- 120. The pee kept on coming...
- 121. She had to ask for nappies from the girls.
- 122. I arrived in Portugal with a burning fever,
- 123. soaked,
- 124. freezing.
- 125. This was June 30th,
- 126. 2013.
- 127. My husband's funeral
had been three days earlier.
- 128. Vitalina, your husband is here with me.
- 129. He has the same sickness as me.
- 130. Nervous disease...
- 131. He's skinny but he's alive.
- 132. Ventura,
you're on the road to perdition.
- 133. What do you do here all day?
- 134. I speak to the walls.
- 135. You're trembling, Ventura.
- 136. It's my illness.
- 137. Stop trembling.
- 138. It's from the pills they give me every day.
- 139. Don't give up.
- 140. Think about your Zulmira.
- 141. I already have enough saved
to buy her plane ticket.
- 142. Your fingers are so thin, so long...
- 143. Strong, white nails...
- 144. Beautiful...
- 145. My fingers are paralyzed...
- 146. because of the shock.
- 147. I went to the hospital in pain.
- 148. The doctors had to cut off
my wedding ring.
- 149. It broke.
- 150. It rolled off onto the floor
and it was lost forever.
- 151. Where's your wedding ring?
- 152. A man with a steel hood
stole it from me...
- 153. Vitalina,
he is also diabetic, but he is alive...
- 154. Notary of Santa Catarina
- 155. The marriage registered
- 156. with the number 1...
- 157. was dissolved
by the death of the husband.
- 158. Did you get Zulmira
a full wedding dress?
- 159. Yes, I did.
- 160. Did you buy her underwear?
- 161. Yes.
- 162. Did you buy her the veil and the dress?
- 163. Headpiece...
- 164. and shoes?
- 165. Yes, I did.
- 166. Wedding ring and cushion?
- 167. Lemon tree blossom.
- 168. Did you pass by my house
in Chão do Monte?
- 169. I did.
- 170. The house is demolished.
- 171. Not a stone left standing.
- 172. And my chickens, my pigs?
- 173. - The goats?
- Ran away.
- 174. My donkey, Fogo Serra?
- 175. Dead.
- 176. My horse, Dinheiro?
- 177. The vultures tore him to pieces.
- 178. I'm feeling a bit better.
- 179. Republic of Cabo Verde.
- 180. Embassy.
- 181. Dear Sirs,
- 182. We hereby confirm the death of
- 183. Joaquim de Brito Varela,
- 184. on June 23rd of this current year.
- 185. We inform you
- 186. that the Funeral Agency Damaia, Ltd.
- 187. Is carrying out the funeral.
- 188. The ceremony is on hold
- 189. until the arrival of his wife.
- 190. Hereby...
- 191. We hope that you will help
- 192. Vitalina Tavares Varela,
- 193. resident in Cabo Verde
- 194. in obtaining her visa
- 195. from the Portuguese Embassy.
- 196. We are hoping
- 197. you will allow his wife
- 198. to be able to attend the funeral.
- 199. The Funeral Agency Damaia, Ltd.
- 200. Is carrying out the funeral
- 201. of Mr Joaquim de Brito Varela
- 202. which will take place
on Thursday, June 27th,
- 203. at the Amadora Cemetery,
- 204. around 3 pm.
- 205. Certificate of Death 171.
- 206. Joaquim de Brito Varela.
- 207. Male.
- 208. 56.
- 209. Marital status:
Married to Vitalina Tavares Varela.
- 210. Santa Catarina, Cabo Verde.
- 211. Last address: Santa Filomena street,
- 212. 20 A, Cova da Moura,
- 213. Buraca, Amadora.
- 214. Hour and date of death:
- 215. 9pm, zero minutes,
- 216. June 23rd, 2013.
- 217. Cause of death:
- 218. Buried in the Amadora Cemetery.
- 219. August 14th, 2013.
- 220. Cause of death...
- 221. Notary of Santa Catarina.
- 222. Certificate of Birth Number 1108.
- 223. Joaquim de Brito Varela,
- 224. a male child.
- 225. Hour and date of birth:
- 226. zero hour, zero minutes,
- 227. January 10th, 1957.
- 228. Notary of Santa Catarina.
- 229. Certificate of Birth,
- 230. number 850.
- 231. August 6th, 1960.
- 232. Born at 4pm,
- 233. on June 20th,
- 234. 1960.
- 235. Place of birth:
- 236. Figueira das Naus.
- 237. At the parish of Santa Catarina,
- 238. a female child
- 239. named Vitalina Tavares Varela,
- 240. legitimate daughter
- 241. of Gervásio da Silva
- 242. 24 years old.
- 243. A bricklayer.
- 244. And Maria Mendes Tavares,
- 245. 17 years old,
- 246. housewife.
- 247. August 6th, 1960.
- 248. Notary of Santa Catarina.
- 249. At 10:30 hours,
- 250. on December 14th,
- 251. 1982,
- 252. in this notary,
- 253. appeared the groom,
- 254. Joaquim de Brito Varela,
- 255. 25 years old,
- 256. bricklayer.
- 257. Resident in Lisbon, Portugal.
- 258. And the bride, Vitalina Tavares Varela,
- 259. 22 years old,
- 260. housewife,
- 261. resident in Figueira das Naus.
- 262. They commonly agreed
- 263. to celebrate their civil marriage.
- 264. By the power vested in me,
- 265. I pronounced Joaquim and Vitalina
- 266. husband and wife.
- 267. How are you doing, Ventura?
- 268. Feeling a bit better.
- 269. Are you a doctor or what?
- 270. Look at you, all dressed up, fancy.
- 271. Should have seen me in my teens...
- 272. Showing off your ruffle shirt...
- 273. Embroidered slacks...
- 274. High-heeled boots...
- 275. Razor in your back pocket.
- 276. I left the barracks
of the construction site...
- 277. I caught the subway train.
- 278. Got off downtown...
- 279. I walked to Estrela Garden.
- 280. It was a warm Sunday.
- 281. Me and my brothers bought
5 bottles of wine... We all got drunk.
- 282. I was thirsty, I drank from the fountain.
- 283. I saw him coming with a smiling face.
- 284. He wore...
- 285. bell-bottoms...
- 286. passport in his pocket...
- 287. the red shirt I gave him
- 288. on his birthday.
- 289. It was his day off
- 290. from his boss J. Builder.
- 291. I've worked at J. Builder too.
- 292. You know the deal, Ventura...
- 293. the life of a Cape Verdean person
is always hard.
- 294. True.
- 295. Whites cracked their whip on our backs.
- 296. Then I lowered my face...
- 297. he attacked me with his razor blade,
- 298. slashed my forehead...
- 299. so I cut his arm with my knife.
- 300. Paralyzed him right there.
- 301. I wanted to kill him with an axe,
but my brothers stopped me.
- 302. The soldiers picked me up,
- 303. put me in a jeep,
and took me to the hospital.
- 304. You see it all, Vitalina...
- 305. You're still alive.
- 306. You're still breathing.
- 307. Blood drips to the floor
- 308. but nobody sees the razor.
- 309. Ventura, you've ruined your life.
- 310. And mine too.
- 311. He is not dead.
- 312. That's a nasty stab I gave you.
- 313. 93 stitches.
- 314. You won't die in your bare feet.
- 315. 48 clips.
- 316. Untie me!
- 317. I must write Zulmira.
She must be worried.
- 318. You've sent me to my retirement.
- 319. How am I going to provide for my wife?
- 320. Vitalina!
- 321. In Alto Cutelo
There are no more berries
- 322. The roots dried out
Can't reach the water
- 323. The water runs deep
Out of man's reach
- 324. The woman waits by the fire
for over a week
- 325. Her children on the road
Only one has a job
- 326. Her husband's gone to Lisbon
A long, long time
- 327. Under contract
- 328. Gone to Lisbon
Sold his land
- 329. He has to work in rain and wind
- 330. Shipyards, factories, scaffolds
- 331. Cheap labour
No matter how hard you work
- 332. Cheap labour
Shack without light
- 333. Cheated by his white brother
- 334. Exploited, cheated
- 335. One day, I'll go back home
- 336. We'll get to the water
- 337. The strength of our arms
- 338. My conscience
- 339. I am the one who works
- 340. I own the land
The power is mine
- 341. Berries up on the hill
- 342. Children running
- 343. A boat in the harbour
- 344. Children running
- 345. A boat in the harbour
- 346. Our Land
- 347. Ventura, come back!
- 348. "Constructions Amadeu Gaudêncio"
- 349. Anybody there?
- 350. Miss Sigela?
- 351. José Tavares Borges speaking.
- 352. How are you, ma'am?
- 353. May I speak to Master Ernesto?
- 354. Anyone there?
- 355. Is this the management?
- 356. Benvindo?
- 357. My godchild Benvindo?
- 358. The doctor discharged you?
- 359. Feeling better?
- 360. Uncle...
- 361. I'll go only when I get my salary.
- 362. - How long have you been waiting?
- Over twenty years.
- 363. - And Correia?
- He grabbed a new life.
- 364. Arlindo?
- 365. Took his wife and kids
- 366. and went abroad.
- 367. Your brother, Piskiza?
- 368. My brother Piskiza
is up there in the hood.
- 369. Also waiting for his salary.
- 370. And Germano?
- 371. Germano, poor devil,
- 372. he died, mauled by the machine,
- 373. his guts...
- 374. spread out on the floor...
- 375. his cap and jacket
are still in his locker.
- 376. Did they fire you?
- 377. No, they didn't fire me.
- 378. I had an epileptic seizure,
- 379. the ambulance came,
- 380. took me to the hospital.
- 381. I stayed in a coma for three months.
- 382. When I got back,
- 383. everything here was in shambles.
- 384. The boss had run away
with money and machines.
- 385. The firm went bankrupt.
- 386. I scream like a horse
- 387. Oh, those lovely gals
- 388. Doctor, what's wrong with me?
- 389. I am starving and I can't eat
- 390. I am so thirsty and I can't drink
- 391. I am so sleepy and I can't sleep
- 392. I miss the Achada São Francisco
- 393. I miss the Achada Bela Kusa
- 394. I miss our comrade Pepe Lopi
- 395. - No, Uncle!
- That's how I learned it!
- 396. This is how people sing it.
- 397. Pepi Lopi,
Achada Pepi Lopi, Uncle.
- 398. Wrong, Benvindo!
It's comrade Pepi Lopi!
- 399. Comrade Pepi Lopi!
- 400. Achada Pepi Lopi!
- 401. I scream like a horse
- 402. Oh, those lovely gals
- 403. Doctor, what's wrong with me?
- 404. I miss the Achada São Francisco!
- 405. I am starving and I can't eat
- 406. I am so thirsty and I can't drink
- 407. I am so sleepy and I can't sleep
- 408. Master Ernesto?
- 409. May I sit down?
- 410. I think I'll stand.
- 411. I always used to stand in the office.
- 412. I think I'll sit.
- 413. You say you're cutting my pay,
from 4 thousand to 3 thousand?
- 414. You say I'm not old enough?
- 415. You say I'm only 17?
- 416. I'm 19 and 3 months!
- 417. Master Ernesto, I would like
to buy bricks to build my house.
- 418. Eight hundred bricks.
- 419. I can pay one thousand a month,
- 420. 8 months, 8 thousand.
- 421. I need cement, 8 bags of cement.
- 422. Thank you, see you next month.
- 423. What are you doing here?
- 424. I am hereto collect my widow's pension.
- 425. A letter from your husband.
- 426. - Get me out of the sun.
- No sun in here, boy.
- 427. - Put me in the shade.
- You're in the shade.
- 428. - Are you with the people?
- Viva the Revolution Army!
- 429. - Are you with us, Ventura?
- 430. - Viva the Revolution Army.
- Are you with the people?
- 431. - United we stand, united we fall.
- Always on the side of the people.
- 432. It's been more than 30 years
since I last saw you.
- 433. Thirty seven, I guess...
- 434. I heard that you've been ill...
- 435. You have better doctors now.
- 436. - Better doctors?
- Yes, better doctors.
- 437. Your time has come.
- 438. A lame nurse sticks a needle into me
- 439. I shit black.
- 440. Remember when you walked
into this infirmary?
- 441. "Good morning, mister Ventura."
"Good morning, mister Nurse."
- 442. - Who shaved you, who bathed you?
- Couldn't wipe your own ass, you fool.
- 443. - Not even a thank you!
- You stank of piss!
- 444. And your screams at night, in the corridors?
"Mother of Monsters!"
- 445. Let me be, leave me alone!
- 446. I didn't know how to greet you.
- 447. When I heard you were coming,
my guts slashed open!
- 448. You're in good hands.
- 449. - The fight has just begun.
- I'm not healthy enough.
- 450. I can't carry any more cement sacks.
- 451. Where does it hurt?
- 452. - My whole body.
- In matters of the flesh I am of no help.
- 453. Know your prayers?
- 454. Our Lord of Nazareth,
Son of the Holy Mary,
- 455. taste the Virgin's milk,
- 456. the Beast's gun is not yours.
- 457. - Prime minister, bankruptcy!
- You're worshiping Satan, boy?
- 458. Saint Anthony, the warrior.
- 459. Sword of Abraham...
- 460. - Lucifer.
- 461. This is no joke, Ventura.
This is a revolution.
- 462. Do you think I like
being locked here with you for 38 years?
- 463. I'd rather be harvesting the grapes.
- 464. I'd rather be helping Father with mass.
- 465. But we weren't made for this.
- 466. Remember, Ventura?
- 467. We left the barracks at a snail's pace.
- 468. We left the barracks empty,
marched all night, our eyes closed.
- 469. When we opened them,
there was nothing else to do:
- 470. overthrow the regime.
- 471. Didn't you see the people
cheering in the streets?
- 472. Am I in jail?
- 473. Lisbon is sealed-off,
didn't you hear the reports?
- 474. Are you going to kill me?
- 475. You've died a thousand deaths.
- 476. What's one death more?
- 477. I've built a good life...
- 478. a good family...
- 479. You call this a living
with your miserable pension?
- 480. I've built lots of buildings,
- 481. banks,
- 482. schools...
- What for?
- 483. You've broken your body,
messed up your head.
- 484. You know nothing about my life!
- 485. Andrade Corvo Street.
Building site of the Telephone Company.
- 486. Your boss stopped the work
because of the coup, remember?
- 487. We took up positions
against the fascists.
- 488. You were up in the scaffolding,
I was ambushed in a corner.
- 489. I wore my steel hood,
- 490. you, your yellow hard-hat.
- 491. Guns aimed at the fascist police...
Scaring the shit out of them.
- 492. A swallow flew by and I looked up.
- 493. You were up there singing a song.
- 494. I wasn't the only one singing.
We all sang.
- 495. Masons, bricklayers, pavers...
- 496. It wasn't springtime.
It wasn't a swallow.
- 497. It came to me one night.
- 498. A big black bird...
- 499. flew over my shack...
- 500. on great black wings...
- 501. Mother of Monsters!
- 502. It wasn't springtime.
It wasn't a swallow.
- 503. You screamed and screamed...
- 504. It wasn't the fascists, it was you
dirty briefs, lost in the streets.
- 505. Open this door in the name
of General Spínola, the Cyclops.
- 506. You ungrateful...!
- 507. Can't you remember
nigger against nigger with knives?
- 508. You were dancing in Estrela Garden.
- 509. Did you wash the blood off my face?
- 510. Who helped you
when you were half dead?
- 511. - Did you hide the knife?
- Who took you to the Military Hospital?
- 512. Did you put 93 stitches in my head?
- 513. Was it you, boy?
- 514. You're a son of the people.
- 515. Is it you, boy?
- 516. Did you shoot those fascist policemen?
- 517. If you'd killed a nigger
you'd already be a general.
- 518. Can you see them so far away?
- 519. Hiding in those shacks...
- 520. Fontainhas, Damaia, Black Cat...
- 521. My children, my grandchildren...
- 522. My brothers.
- 523. Stand up, Ventura!
- 524. - The fight has just begun.
- I'm dying.
- 525. Relax, Ventura.
- 526. I'll never die.
- 527. - I don't know you.
- Don't you?
- 528. But your night does.
And so do the tiles of your shack.
- 529. And the step of your door.
- 530. - What are you afraid of?
- Losing my work contract.
- 531. You have yet to build your shack.
- 532. Can't fight no more.
- 533. Can't work no more.
- 534. You still have to bring Zulmira
from Cabo Verde.
- 535. Bought a wedding dress
with a veil and shoes.
- 536. You've met Zulmira?
- 537. Bought a gold wedding ring and a watch
for 7 grand.
- 538. - Seven grand?
- Yes, sir.
- 539. I lived a hell of a life,
working when ill, raising my children.
- 540. - Now I'm retired.
- Shut up, Ventura.
- 541. They're all grown up,
it's for them now to help daddy.
- 542. - I'm retired.
- 543. All your children are yet to be born.
- 544. I'm retired.
- 545. I'm retired now.
- 546. Where are you now?
- 547. I'm sleeping in the Company barracks.
- 548. But where are you now?
- 549. I'm at work,
on site at the telephone company.
- 550. Boss tells us there's no work today,
there's a revolution going on.
- 551. Where are you?
- 552. I'm scared.
- 553. In Estrela Garden.
- 554. I'm with Toti, João,
Lila, Nené and Zezé.
- 555. Lots of Cape Verdeans, lots of whores.
- 556. High on the hill
- 557. No more berries
- 558. Roots are dry
- 559. No water to find
- 560. River runs deep
The man can't rest
- 561. The woman waits for a week
By the fire she lit
- 562. Her children...
- 563. Her children on the road
Only one works
- 564. Husband went to Lisbon
- 565. With a contract
- 566. Ticket to Lisbon
Cost him his land
- 567. Works in rain
And wind and cold
- 568. Up in the scaffold
Down in the pit
- 569. Cheap labour
- 570. Cheap labour
Shack in the dark
- 571. Another day
- 572. My conscience
- 573. Worked all my life
- 574. No berries on the hill
- 575. Spare me the singing,
that won't beat me.
- 576. Ventura!
- 577. - Zulmira!
- Fight it, stay with me.
- 578. - This freedom trooper wants to kill us.
- 579. He stole our wedding ring.
- 580. Stole our life.
- 581. Says I'm not married to you.
- 582. Says we haven't got any children.
- 583. Says we won't get to live.
- 584. I hear you sing
but I don't feel you happy.
- 585. I hold you in your sleep
but I don't feel you at peace.
- 586. If you go now,
what will become of me?
- 587. I feel your belly bloated
but I don't see you eat.
- 588. You don't like rice,
chicken once in a while.
- 589. You were crazy for pork chops.
- 590. I used to fry lots of them in my shack,
- 591. Before Zulmira arrived from Cabo Verde.
- 592. With you like this and me unemployed,
we won't be able to pay the rent.
- 593. Vitor has his own to raise,
he can't help.
- 594. Adelaide needs
her expensive eye surgery.
- 595. This is the story of the young life
- 596. and of the life yet to come
and of all things that will follow.
- 597. Stay close to me, time will fly.
- 598. The day will come
when we'll be able to accept our sufferings.
- 599. There will be no more fear, nor mystery.
- 600. You have no destiny, nor horizon.
- 601. You are, and you have nothing.
- 602. We'll leave this world together
and they'll forget us.
- 603. They'll forget our faces.
- 604. You shall sing no more.
- 605. This story is not over yet.
- 606. Our sufferings
will be joys for all the men to come.
- 607. They will say nice things about us.
- 608. It won't be long before we know
why we live and why we suffer.
- 609. We'll know everything.
- 610. Everything...
- 611. We lay with the dead locked in silence.
- 612. See how I tremble?
- 613. This is what I had to tell you, boy.
- 614. Ventura, on your guard.
- 615. I'm paying attention, Master.
- 616. I can't feel my arm.
- 617. The doctor has discharged me.