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Episodio 21: Secondhand Treasures (Tesoros de segunda mano)

Por Duolingo el miércoles 07 de julio del 2021

En este episodio, dos historias de gente que da una nueva vida a cosas usadas.

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Transcripción

Diana: Cuando Madeline Gunderson se mudó de Seattle, su ciudad natal, a Nueva York para estudiar en una escuela de cine, sólo podía llevarse el equipaje que le cabía en el avión.

Madeline: I moved almost 5,000 kilometers away from my home to New York City. I didn't bring many of my possessions. I didn't bring my bed, my desk, or my art collection. I was excited to start a new life, but I was also a little sad to move into my new apartment because it was totally empty. On my first night in my new place, I ate pizza for dinner, alone, while sitting on the floor of my bedroom.

Diana: El departamento de Madeline estuvo vacío un par de semanas, hasta que se enteró de una práctica única en Nueva York…

Madeline: One evening, I was looking at Instagram and I saw an account for finding free secondhand furniture. I knew it was the perfect way to fill my empty apartment.

Diana: Welcome, bienvenidos y bienvenidas a “Relatos en inglés”, un podcast de Duolingo. Soy Diana Gameros. En cada episodio podrás practicar inglés a tu propio ritmo, escuchando historias reales y fascinantes, contadas por las personas que las vivieron.

Los protagonistas hablan en un inglés sencillo y fácil de entender para quienes están aprendiendo el idioma. En cada capítulo, yo te acompañaré, para asegurarme de que entiendas todo.

Hoy: dos relatos sobre artículos de segunda mano, o secondhand, que cobran una nueva vida al volver a ser usados.

Diana: Era el otoño del 2019, y Madeline Gunderson cruzó todo el país para comenzar su escuela de posgrado. Su sueño era trabajar en el cine.

Madeline: It was my first time in New York City. I was so excited to be accepted to the school of my dreams. I couldn’t wait to explore the city! I wanted to make documentary films, and to me, New York was the best place in the world to meet lots of different people with lots of interesting stories.

Diana: Madeline se instaló con dos compañeras en un pequeño departamento en Brooklyn, uno de los cinco distritos de la ciudad de Nueva York. No le tomó mucho tiempo desempacar. Como cama, solo tenía un colchón de aire, o air mattress.

Madeline: I arrived with two suitcases full of my favorite clothing, my camera, and some photos of my friends and family. There was no bed in my new bedroom. I just had an air mattress on the floor. I thought it was normal for life to be a little difficult when you're new to New York. And when I inflated my air mattress on my first night in my new apartment, I felt excited about my new life. But I also felt alone.

Diana: Al ser estudiante, Madeline no tenía mucho dinero para comprar muebles… así que se preparó mentalmente para vivir en un departamento que tuviera solo lo necesario. Pero, un día, mientras ojeaba internet en su teléfono, se encontró con una página de Instagram llamada "Stooping NYC".

Madeline: I came home from school late one night. I was pretty tired, and I was looking at Instagram before going to sleep. That's when I found an account called “Stooping NYC."

Diana: En la ciudad, un stoop es una pequeña escalinata frente a la entrada de una casa o edificio. Son muy típicos de Nueva York.

Madeline: In New York City, lots of people sit outside on their stoops. It's a good place to read a book, listen to music, or chat with friends. It's a unique cultural thing in New York, and it makes the city feel so full of energy and life. People also leave some pretty interesting things in front of their stoops, which are free for people to take.

Diana: La página de Instagram que se encontró Madeline publica fotos de los diferentes artículos de segunda mano que los neoyorquinos dejan en la acera para donarlos. Son por lo general objetos que se dejan afuera para que los recoja el basurero o para quien pase por allí se los lleve. To stoop, como verbo, en jerga de Nueva York, es el acto de llevarse estas cosas de segunda mano a casa.

Madeline: On the Instagram page, there were a lot of nice things. I saw new designer chairs, brightly painted shelves, and even original art. Anything you can imagine, it was out on the street! I couldn't believe it. In Seattle, where I’m from, it rains all the time, so it’s pretty rare for people to leave things outside for their neighbors to take.

Diana: Muchos neoyorquinos dejan sus cosas de segunda mano con una nota escrita a mano que suele decir: "Gratis", "¡Llévame a casa!" o “Todavía funciona”, para que sus vecinos sepan que pueden llevárselo.

Madeline: There's a famous phrase that says “one person’s trash is another person’s treasure,” and it really is true in New York. If you don't want something anymore, then you can probably find someone who does want it.

Diana: Tan pronto como se encontró con el perfil de “Stooping NYC” en Instagram, Madeline pensó que había dado con una solución para el problema de su piso vacío. Y se marcó un objetivo: amueblar su departamento con muebles anunciados en ese perfil.

Madeline: I turned on all of the notifications on my phone and waited. I was ready to leave the house and pick up furniture immediately. But it was actually pretty difficult, because as soon as a photo is posted on the Instagram account, a race begins. You have to move fast to get the good stuff! Once, I saw a cute table on the account. I quickly got dressed and grabbed my keys. But by the time I got to the address, someone else had already taken the table!

Diana: La ciudad de Nueva York es enorme. Más de ocho millones de personas viven ahí. Y la página de Instagram publica anuncios de los cinco distritos de la ciudad.

Madeline: I realized that stooping was a great way for someone like me, who was new to the city, to explore. While I was searching for furniture, I discovered parts of New York that were totally new to me. I got to know a lot of the city while stooping.

Diana: Dado que muchos objetos regalados se los llevaban en cuestión de minutos, Madeleine tuvo que ser muy paciente y aprender a moverse rápidamente.

Madeline: After I tried four or five times to stoop something, I finally did it! I got a white kitchen table that was really close to my apartment. It looked almost new! I was lucky because the table had wheels, so I was able to roll it back home. I was so happy to have a new piece of furniture, but I was also excited because I felt like I was becoming a real New Yorker.

Diana: Después de ese éxito, Madeline tuvo que dar con algunas sillas para poder usar su nueva mesa.

Madeline: After a while, I also found some chairs and some really nice lamps through the Instagram page. And I even used the lamps for one of my student films. Little by little, I was able to stoop all of the furniture that I needed to fill my apartment.

Diana: Con sus nuevos hallazgos, el departamento de Madeline comenzó a verse menos vacío.

Madeline: With all of the furniture that I found, my apartment started to feel like a real home. When I finally felt comfortable in my new place, I invited my film school classmates to Thanksgiving dinner. Everyone came to my apartment with some food, and we all sat down to eat on my table and chairs. I was so happy to share my new home with friends.

Diana: Ahora que el departamento de Madeline está amueblado, ya no necesita salir a cazar muebles dejados en la calle, pero aún sigue la página de Instagram “Stooping NYC”.

Madeline: There are so many interesting people in the city. I love seeing the things that they throw away, and imagining the story behind each object. You never know when you might find a treasure!

Diana: A Madeline, una página de Instagram de objetos de segunda mano la ayudó a construirse un hogar en Nueva York.

En Oklahoma, un estado más al oeste, la propietaria de otra cuenta de Instagram está tratando de ayudar a que otros objetos de segunda mano encuentren su hogar. Ese perfil publica fotos de cosas olvidadas dentro de libros de segunda mano. Emma Smreker lleva la cuenta. Ella es profesora de francés en Oklahoma City. Lleva años coleccionando libros usados de tiendas de segunda mano y mercados, o flea markets.

Emma: I have always loved going to flea markets and secondhand stores. I used to go with my dad when I was a kid. I like looking at the old, used books. They’re dusty, and I always feel like I have to wash my hands after I touch them. But that's a good thing because it makes me feel like I’m spending my time doing something special.

Diana: Un libro usado en particular hizo que Emma comenzara un viaje en busca de objetos ocultos escondidos entre páginas.

Emma: Because I’m a French teacher, when people find French books, they usually think of me. In 2018, someone gave me a French book for my birthday. And inside the book, there was a receipt from a café in the city of Montreal in Canada.

I thought that receipt was so cool. I started thinking about the original owner of the book. I wondered if the person was a native French speaker or if they were trying to learn French, like I once did.

Diana: El recibo le dio a Emma una idea: decidió crear una página de Instagram para publicar fotos de las diferentes cosas que encontró dentro de los libros usados.

Emma: I started taking pictures of the things that I found. I posted them to my Instagram account, which is called “In Used Books.” I started looking at the used book sections in secondhand stores. At first, I didn't think that I would find anything interesting. But I continued doing it because I really enjoyed it.

Diana: Pero Emma se sorprendió de la cantidad de cosas que encontró cuando decidió ponerse a buscarlas. Constantemente descubría objetos interesantes olvidados… muchos de ellos utilizados como separadores, o bookmarks.

Emma: I found notes, photographs, love letters, and even flowers. People use those things as bookmarks, and then they forget about them when they donate or sell their books. I'm always so curious about the original owners. I wonder: Was the person happy when they read the book? Did they actually finish reading the book? Why did they get rid of it?

Diana: La página de Instagram de Emma fue ganando más y más seguidores a medida que publicaba fotos de los tesoros ocultos que iba encontrando. Disfrutaba jugando a los detectives con algunas de las cosas más interesantes que encontraba.

Emma: If I find photographs or a letter with any information in it, I usually try to find out more online. At first I was just curious, but then I started trying to return the items to their original owners. I love mysteries, and I feel like a little detective when I'm trying to find people.

Diana: En más de una ocasión, Emma ha logrado devolver esas fotos familiares antiguas. Y un hallazgo en particular la impresionó.

Emma: In December 2018, I was at a flea market and I found a book with a letter inside it. Then I realized that it was actually a poem written to a newspaper in Ohio. The date on it was 1893 — over 100 years ago! I was so excited. I thought, “Wow, this is it! I've always wanted to find something like this!"

Diana: Emma se puso a trabajar usando sus habilidades de detective para resolver este nuevo misterio. Quería ver si podía relacionar al autor del poema con algún descendiente vivo, para darles a estos últimos una sorpresa.

Emma: Because the poem was from 1893, I decided to look at public documents. I wanted to find obituaries associated with the name of the poet, Ed Ruffner. I looked at so many obituaries — more than I can count. I was able to find out the name of Ed's wife and their children. I even made a family tree.

Diana: Con el árbol genealógico, o family tree, Emma comenzó a tratar de localizar a descendientes vivos, si es que los hubiera.

Emma: After I found the names of Ed's family members who were born in the 1960s and 1970s, I started searching for them on social media. Eventually, I found a woman named Catherine, and I thought she might be his descendent! My adrenaline was high, and my body started shaking. My husband asked me, “Are you okay? I don't know if you're happy or if you're having a panic attack.” I told him that I was just excited.

Diana: Una vez que Emma encontró a Catherine, le envió un mensaje para hacerle saber lo que había encontrado. Al principio, estaba un poco nerviosa que Catherine no respondiera, o que pensara que todo aquello era espeluznante, o creepy.

Emma: When I contact somebody who is connected to an item I found in a book, I always worry that they'll think I'm creepy. But Catherine was so sweet and so nice, and she confirmed that she was related to Ed Ruffner! She even told me that she felt bad because she didn’t have a lot of information about him. It was so incredible to find her because I did not think my search was going to work. I was afraid that I was contacting the wrong person.

Diana: Emma encontró a Catherine por su página de Instagram, en la que publicaba fotos de sus obras de arte.

Emma: Catherine is a wonderful artist. She creates colorful, beautiful paintings. And she is a great-great-grandchild of the poet Ed Ruffner! Catherine also introduced me to her cousins so they could give me more information about their family history. She was really kind. In a weird way, she welcomed me into her family.

Diana: Emma había localizado a los miembros de la familia del poeta, pero sentía que su trabajo no había terminado. Todavía había que hacer una cosa más relacionada con el poema.

Emma: Catherine’s family told me that Ed Ruffner wrote many poems during his life, and many of them were published in his local newspaper. Ed meant to send the poem I found to the newspaper too; but instead, it ended up in that book. And then I found the letter over a hundred years later. So, I started thinking about what I could do.

Diana: La mayoría de los poemas y escritos de Ruffner se habían publicado en un periódico llamado "The Lancaster Eagle Gazette". ¡Y Emma se enteró de que ese mismo periódico todavía se publicaba! Así que decidió escribir su propia carta al director para contarle la historia de aquel viejo poema.

Emma: I explained everything to the editor, and I asked if the poem could be published in the newspaper. I didn't think that they would be interested, but they published it on the front page! It was so cool! And I still smile ear to ear when I think of it.

Diana: En febrero del 2019, el poema de Ed Ruffner "Primavera, adiós", “Spring, goodbye”, se publicó en la primera plana del Lancaster Eagle Gazette, más de 125 años después de haberse escrito.

Emma: I asked the family if they wanted the poem back and they said, “No, you should keep it. You've earned it.” It's a beautiful poem about spring and how sad it is when the season ends. It's an old poem, but that idea is still true today.

"Spring good bye, it is best we part and yet I sigh."

Diana: Después de todo el trabajo de Emma, el poema finalmente volvió a los descendientes del escritor, habiendo así encontrado su último destino. Gracias al interés de Emma por los libros de segunda mano, un misterio olvidado por mucho mucho tiempo, por fin había sido resuelto.

Emma: I'm a huge fan of poetry, but there's something very, very personal about this poem in particular. People tell me that it was my destiny to find it and to share it with the world. I really like that feeling. I feel like I'm doing something good.

Diana: Emma Smreker vive en Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. Sigue enseñando francés y dirige su página de Instagram, @inusedbooks.

Nuestra primera narradora, Madeline Gunderson, produjo este episodio. Es una periodista y cineasta que vive en la ciudad de Nueva York, donde sigue contando historias sobre sus vecinos. Tú mismo puedes buscar tesoros donados en la página de Instagram que ella usó, @stoopingnyc.

Gracias por haber escuchado “Relatos en inglés”. Nos encantaría saber qué te pareció este episodio. Puedes enviarnos un correo electrónico a podcast@duolingo.com, o también puedes enviarnos un mensaje de audio por WhatsApp al +1-703-953-93-69.

“Relatos en inglés” es una producción de Duolingo y Adonde Media. Puedes seguirnos en Spotify o tu plataforma preferida. Yo soy Diana Gameros. Thank you for listening!

Créditos

Este episodio es una producción de Duolingo y Adonde Media.

Narradores y protagonistas: Madeline Gunderson y Emma Smreker
Escritora del guión: Madeline Gunderson
Editora de transcripción: Stephanie Joyce
Mezclado por: Giovana Romano Sanchez
Diseño de sonido e ingeniero en masterización: Antonio Romero
Gerente editorial: David Alandete
Productora asistente: Caro Rolando
Gerente de producción: Román Frontini
Productora ejecutiva: Martina Castro