There was a special treat for the Australian guests at the National Day of Venezuela when the Ambassador’s daughter Mariana Davila sang the Australian national anthem with her mother Maria Teresa playing the piano. Of course they did it for their own anthem too but this little tribute sent a few shivers down my spine when Mariana sang our rarely sung second verse that most Aussies don’t know, don’t sing and would cringe with the lyrics “for those who’ve come across the seas, we’ve boundless plains to share”, because excepting the first Australians that’s how we all got here and now the government has added some conditions.
But this was an event for the Ambassador Nelson Davila to give his ‘shortest speech’, for us all to enjoy some Venezuelan treats and taste test the rum which is among the best in the world, according to the Venezuelans.
Ambassador Davila mentioned the Pope’s current visit to South America - which he called the “the continent of hope”- hopeful that his incumbency will have a positive impact in the areas of the environment and for the poor. And in this room at the Hellenic Club with a formidable gathering of South American ambassadors it was the Greek situation that garnered the most comment. The ever so diplomatic counselor of Greece Varvara Andriopoulou declined to comment, the rest of us had an opinion on all aspects of the problem. And that’s where this world of ours demonstrates how we are in touch with each other through modern media, technological advances and an insatiable thirst for information. Getting the right information is imperative, disseminating it properly an absolute.