I heard the news of the Aberfan disaster from a young Spanish doctor. He had tears in his eyes
Fifty years on, I don’t remember what he said. It didn’t matter much. He knew me slightly, enough to remember that I came from Wales. We were both working at a hospital in uptown Manhattan.
It was a time before good cheap international communications. News drifted in of the horrors over the next few days. I was born a few miles down the valley from Aberfan.
Before, it was an unremarkable little community. You needed a reason for visiting or remembering it.. That all changed as a giant mud-flow swept down to engulf a little school.
Years later I remember Aberfan afresh. A Mexican student, this time studying in Manchester for a business degree, came up to his tutors in some distress. He also had tears in his eyes. Susan and I in puzzlement thought that he was talking about moths.
We eventually understood. He meant mud. There had been another mud slide. This time in Mexico.