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Episodio 26: Friends Reunited (Amigos reunidos)

Por Duolingo el miércoles 06 de octubre del 2021

En este episodio, dos reencuentros que llegan tras largas ausencias.

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Diana: Era exactamente el mediodía del primero de junio del 2000 y Ben Morgan estaba en lo alto de la Torre Eiffel en París, esperando que ocurriera un milagro.

Ben: Eight years before, while I was still at university, I made a promise with my best friend, Sam. We promised that if we ever stopped being in contact, we would meet at noon on June the 1st, 2000, at the top of the Eiffel Tower. And I never forgot that promise.

Diana: Pero Ben no tenía forma de saber si Sam se acordaría. No había hablado con ella durante años…

Ben: As the minutes passed, I started to worry. I didn’t know if she was going to come. And I wondered: Did I come to Paris for nothing?

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, vamos a escuchar dos historias de personas que se reencuentran, o are reunited, tras largas ausencias. Nuestro primer narrador es de Inglaterra, y habla con un acento británico. Por eso, a veces no pronuncia la R en palabras como before: “eight years before” y university: “while I was still at university”.

Diana: Ben Morgan conoció a su amiga Sam Walker cuando comenzaron a estudiar en la Universidad de Cambridge en Inglaterra en septiembre de 1991. Cambridge fue fundada hace más de 900 años y es una de las universidades más prestigiosas y respetadas del mundo. Los estudiantes allí son asignados a un college, o facultad, para vivir y estudiar.

Ben: Everyone at my college lived in the same group of buildings, and there were also places for all the students to eat, including a cafeteria, which was for more casual meals, and a formal dining hall for special dinners and events.

Diana: Además de la cafetería y el comedor, había un bar donde solían reunirse los estudiantes.

Ben: I didn’t know anyone at the college, so I went to the bar on my first night to try and meet some new friends. Very soon after I arrived, I met Sam, and we immediately got along very well. We had a similar sense of humor, and we liked the same music and TV shows. After a few weeks, we started spending all our time together.

Diana: Ben y Sam no tenían clases juntos, pero vivían muy cerca, así que se veían todos los días.

Ben: We ate dinner together, went to bars and nightclubs, and spent hours hanging out in each other’s rooms, where we played music and talked. Everyone thought we were dating, but we were just very good friends. Even when we did start dating other people, we still spent lots of our free time together. During summer vacation, we weren’t able to see each other because my family lived in Belgium and Sam’s family was in England. This was before most people had mobile phones or email, but we wrote letters to each other every week.

Diana: Cuando Ben regresó a la universidad para estudiar su segundo año de carrera, se las ingenió para que él y Sam tuvieran habitaciones en la misma residencia de estudiantes. Formaron un vínculo tan cercano que parecía imposible que alguna vez llegaran a perder el contacto, o lose touch.

Ben: One night, we stayed up late talking in my room. We started to chat about our old friends, people we used to know but didn’t talk to anymore. “We can never lose touch like that,” Sam said. I agreed. I couldn’t imagine my life without Sam. We decided to make sure that if we did lose touch, then we could find each other again.

Diana: Esto fue antes de que los teléfonos móviles, el correo electrónico o las redes sociales fueran comunes. En ese entonces era difícil reencontrarse con la gente si perdías el contacto.

Ben: Sam and I made a plan. If we ever lost touch, wherever we were in the world, whatever we were doing, we were going to meet at noon at the top of the Eiffel Tower on June the 1st in the year 2000. We made another promise, too. We agreed not to talk about the plan again after that night, not even to each other.

Diana: Ambos mantuvieron su promesa y nunca volvieron a hablar del asunto. Al final de su segundo año, tuvieron que tomar unos duros exámenes. Todos los estudiantes de Cambridge tienen que aprobarlos… o no se les permite seguir estudiando en la universidad.

Ben: I didn’t pass all of my exams. So after the school year ended, I had to leave Cambridge. Later that year, I started at a new university more than 200 miles away, in Durham, in the North of England. I made new friends, but Sam and I stayed in touch for the next couple of years. We talked on the telephone, wrote letters, and saw each other when we could.

Diana: Pero entonces sucedieron un montón de cosas que llevaron a Ben y Sam por caminos muy diferentes.

Ben: My parents moved from their home in Belgium and Sam’s parents moved to Australia. Then, I finished studying in Durham, and I moved into an apartment. At the same time, Sam got a new job and apartment. Suddenly, I didn’t know where she lived anymore. It actually happened — we lost touch.

Diana: Ben pensó mucho en Sam durante esos años y se preguntó si ella recordaría aquella vieja promesa que se hicieron. Solo habían hablado de ella una vez, hacía mucho, mucho tiempo.

Ben: When the year 2000 arrived, I still remembered our promise. I was working as a teacher in London, but luckily, I had a break in June, so I was able to go to Paris without missing work. So, when it was time, I traveled to Paris by myself, I rented a really cheap hotel room and watched tennis matches on the tiny television. And I waited…

Diana: Ben no sabía si Sam también estaría en París o si se acordaba de la promesa que se hicieron hacía ocho años.

Ben: On June the 1st, I went to the Eiffel Tower. I was really nervous, but I was also excited that I might see my friend again. I stood in line with the other tourists and got into the elevator. At 12 o’clock, I was waiting at the top for Sam. I walked around and looked at all the people. They were taking pictures and enjoying the views with their friends and families. I searched and waited, but Sam didn’t come.

Diana: Ben esperó varias horas, todavía pensando que tal vez aparecería Sam. Pero finalmente tuvo que asumirlo: no iba a venir.

Ben: I was so sad that Sam didn’t come. I couldn’t believe that she forgot. Before I left, I bought a postcard of the Eiffel Tower. I wrote just three words on the back: “Where were you?” Then, I wrote my email address at the bottom of the postcard. I didn’t know where Sam lived, so I sent it to the place where we first met: Cambridge University.

Diana: Ben estaba seguro de que la postal no le llegaría a Sam, pero al menos debía intentarlo.

Ben: Then, more than six weeks later, I got an email — from Sam! I couldn’t believe it!

Diana: Resultó que los empleados de la universidad enviaron la postal a la antigua casa de la familia de Sam, y los nuevos inquilinos sabían la dirección de ella en Londres. Y a pesar de que Sam había dejado aquel apartamento hacía ya tiempo, la oficina de correos logró localizarla y le reenvió la carta. ¡Fue un golpe de suerte!

Ben: In the email, she told me that, actually, she didn’t forget. She wasn’t able to come because she had to work, but she tried to get a message to me at the Eiffel Tower, in case I was there. I also discovered that she lived in London too! So we arranged to meet just a few days later, in the middle of Hungerford Bridge.

Diana: Hungerford Bridge es un puente para peatones sobre el río Támesis en Londres que siempre está lleno de gente.

Ben: As soon as we saw each other in the crowd, we ran toward each other and hugged. We laughed, talked, and held hands for hours. It was like we were back at college again. We asked someone we didn’t know to take a picture of us. “Is this your wife?” he asked me. I told him, “No. This is my best friend. We lost touch for a while, but we just found each other again.” Even though our reunion at the Eiffel Tower didn’t happen like we planned, we still got back in touch!

Diana: Hoy, más de veinte años después, Ben y Sam siguen siendo amigos.

Ben: Since that day, we have always stayed in contact. Sam came to my wedding, and she knows my three children, Freddie, Zachary, and Juliet. Our families get together whenever we can, even though we live far away. It’s so much easier to stay connected with friends now, with WhatsApp, Facetime, and social media. But even without those things, I know we’ll never lose each other again.

Diana: Ben y Sam planearon su reencuentro… pero no todos los reencuentros son planeados. Por ejemplo, uno de los reencuentros más importantes de la vida de Roy Wilkins fue con un hombre que ni siquiera sabía que había conocido antes.

Antes de entrar en su historia, una nota rápida sobre el acento de Roy. Es del sur de los Estados Unidos, por lo que notarás algunas diferencias en la pronunciación de ciertas palabras. En palabras que terminan en “i-n-g” suele no pronunciar la g final: “This man could not stop looking at me”. También, notarás que en palabras que empiezan con “t-h” o th Roy las pronuncia más como una d: “I started to train with them”.

Diana: A principios de los 2000, Roy estaba en Afganistán desplegado con el ejército de los Estados Unidos.

Roy: In 2004, I was a soldier in the United States Army, and it was my last day in Afghanistan. We were in the city of Kandahar. I was going to get on the plane to travel back to the U.S. the next morning. The other soldiers and I were excited to travel back to our families. We just had one more mission to complete.

Diana: Kandahar es una región en el sur de Afganistán donde hubo muchos combates entre el ejército de los Estados Unidos y los talibanes y Al Qaeda. Era un lugar muy peligroso.

Roy: For our final mission, we went to the desert in a Humvee, which is a type of military truck. We needed to find explosives called IEDs. We had to remove them from the area to make it safe for our troops. The explosives were all around us, but we did not know where they were. We looked for hours. Then, suddenly, I saw a bright blue light. That’s all I remember…

Diana: El Humvee de Roy activó un artefacto explosivo… y saltó por los aires. Él apenas se salvó, y después de ser trasladado a un hospital, entró en coma, y duró así dos meses. Y cuando despertó…

Roy: I had no idea where I was, but I heard a quiet voice in my head. It said, “I got you.” I didn’t know who the voice belonged to or what it meant.

Diana: La voz que Roy tenía en su cabeza repetía I got you, una expresión que significa literalmente “te tengo” y que en realidad quiere decir “me ocupo de ti”.

Roy: When I woke up, my body was connected to a whole lot of machines, and I couldn’t move. As soon as I could, I started screaming and shouting. I thought I was still in Afghanistan, and I was afraid that I was a prisoner. Then the doctor came into my room and spoke to me in English. He told me that I was safe in the United States, in a hospital.

Diana: Roy había sido trasladado de regreso a Estados Unidos después del accidente, pero no recordaba lo que le había sucedido.

Roy: I was in a lot of pain, and I could not move. I felt like something was wrong, but I didn’t know what. I remember my father coming to visit me. He told me, “Something is missing, but you’re going to be OK.” I didn’t understand, but I was too tired to ask him what it meant. Several weeks later, I realized I only had one leg. The doctors told me that they had to remove my leg to save my life.

Diana: Roy tuvo que asumir que había perdido una pierna, pero le costó. Llegó a decir que se sentía solo “medio hombre” después del accidente. Pero la voz que seguía escuchando, la que le decía aquello de I got you, le consolaba.

Roy: I could hear that voice in my head the whole time I was in the hospital. Every day and every night, I heard, “I got you, I got you.” But I still couldn’t explain what it meant. After a few more months in the hospital, they moved me to the VA center.

Diana: VA: Veterans’ Affairs, es un centro donde los veteranos de guerra que han sido heridos en combate van a rehabilitación. Roy tuvo que aprender a caminar de nuevo con una prótesis en la pierna.

Roy: I had to go back to the VA every day for physical therapy. I worked very hard for eight months to be able to walk again with my new leg. Many times, I thought I couldn’t do it. Often, I cried during the night because I was in so much pain. I didn’t know if I would ever feel OK again. But I always heard that voice saying, “I got you.” And that made me feel better.

Diana: Con el paso de los años, Roy se adaptó a su nueva pierna, y comenzó a moverse con más facilidad. Usaba menos su silla de ruedas, o wheelchair. Pero todavía iba al VA todos los días… y comenzó a ayudar a otros veteranos en su recuperación. Muchos de ellos usaban el gimnasio del centro para entrenar, o train. Un día, Roy decidió intentar ir él mismo.

Roy: Those men looked like me. Many of them lost arms and legs in combat. They went to the gym to train and play sports every day. I started to train with them, and as I became stronger, I started to feel more like the person I was before my accident. I started to feel good about life again. I even joined a wheelchair basketball team! During the next five years, we played together and went to many competitions. Then, one day, I was training with my friends in the gym, when I noticed a group of men.

Diana: Roy no prestó mucha atención al grupo, ya que a menudo había visitantes en el VA. Pero pronto se dio cuenta de que un hombre lo miraba fijamente.

Roy: This man could not stop looking at me. I had no idea who he was. He didn’t look familiar to me at all. He had grey hair and grey beard, and he was wearing the blue uniform of the American Legion. He smiled and started walking over to me.

Diana: The American Legion, la Legión Americana, es una organización especial para veteranos de guerra en los Estados Unidos. Por el uniforme, Roy sabía que el hombre también había servido como soldado. Se le acercó y lo saludó, y luego comenzó a hacer preguntas.

Roy: He asked if I was in Kandahar in Afghanistan. I said, “Yes.” He then asked me if I was in a Humvee, during a big explosion. I was very confused, but again I said, “Yes.” He then started smiling and said, “I’m the man who pulled you from that Humvee.” I couldn’t believe it. I started crying, and then he took my hand and said, “I got you.” It was his voice that was in my head for almost ten years.

Diana: El hombre era un soldado ya retirado de nombre Keith Melick. Había servido en Afganistán al mismo tiempo que Roy, y había visto estallar la bomba en Kandahar.

Roy: Keith told me that when he saw the explosion, he ran towards the Humvee, and he thought everyone was dead. When he saw that I was still alive, he sat with me. And held my hand and then told me, “I got you, I got you” over and over again. He stayed with me until the helicopter arrived to help us. After I went to the hospital, Keith never knew if I lived or died. But he said that he never forgot my voice.

Diana: Mientras esperaba para ser trasladado al hospital en Afganistán, Roy había hablado con Keith, aunque no lo recordaba. Y aunque Keith no había escuchado a Roy hablar durante casi diez años, nunca se le olvidó su voz.

Roy: Keith and I talked and talked for a long time. We hugged each other and cried. He told me so much about the accident, which helped me remember a lot of things about that day. I still couldn’t believe it. That the voice I heard inside of my head for all those years belonged to the person standing in front of me! Soon, it was time for Keith to go. But neither of us wanted to leave the gym that day. We didn’t want to leave each other.

Diana: Roy y Keith se vieron, un par de meses después, y ahora se ven siempre que pueden. También se llaman regularmente y se han convertido en amigos muy cercanos.

Roy: Finding Keith again was a really wonderful experience. My life was so difficult after the accident, but I truly believe Keith was sent by God to help me. Today, Keith is much more than a friend to me. He’s my brother. A real brother.

Diana: Roy Wilkins vive en Carolina del Norte con su esposa y su perro. Todavía es voluntario en el centro de VA, donde hizo su rehabilitación, y también forma parte del equipo de baloncesto en silla de ruedas.

Nuestro primer narrador, Ben Morgan, es subdirector de una escuela secundaria en Londres, donde vive con su esposa y sus tres hijos.

Este episodio fue producido por Sam Walker, una escritora y locutora que vive en Arizona. Ella, por cierto, todavía se siente mal por no haberse presentado en la Torre Eiffel el 1 de junio del 2000 para verse con su amigo Ben.

Gracias por haber escuchado “Relatos en inglés”. Nos encantaría saber qué te pareció este episodio. Puedes enviarnos un correo electrónico a, 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!


Este episodio es una producción de Duolingo y Adonde Media.

Narradores y protagonistas: Ben Morgan y Roy Wilkins
Escritoras del guión: Sam Walker
Editora de transcripción: Stephanie Joyce
Mezclado por: David De Luca
Diseño de sonido e ingeniero en masterización: David De Luca
Gerente editorial: David Alandete
Productora asistente: Caro Rolando
Gerente de producción: Román Frontini
Productora ejecutiva: Martina Castro