Monday, May 16, 2022

Hilton Head Island: Andes; Eichmann; eulogy

Mid-May and predictably the Low Country is getting hot.  I am just back from walking a sailbag of washed boat clothes down to GANNET and though I walked at a moderate pace I am sweating.  86ºF/30C at noon outside.  Inside the Great Cabin 93ºF/34C with the hatches open.  I did not stay in the Great Cabin long.

Carol flies here Saturday for ten days.  I have decided to delay my next testing of the Evo until after she returns to Illinois because I want to go out and not have a time I have to return.  I may head offshore for a day or two.

On Netflix recently I have watched an interesting series and a disturbing documentary.

The series, Magical Andes, is about those mountains.  There are two seasons.  The first starts in the north and goes south.  The second starts in the south and goes north.  The filming and the scenery are spectacular.  Despite some romantic nonsense, such as one poor deluded creature saying, “The mountains love me”.  And another, “The river loves me”.  Really?  I enjoyed it.

The documentary is the French made, The Trial of Adolf Eichmann.  I found an option for the narrative to be in English.

I know the history.  What is troubling about the film are the personal experiences.

The Israeli police found a manifest of all the Jews rounded up from one region and sent to extermination camps, complete with the numbers tattooed on each victims arm.  One of the police officers in the room as this was being discussed raised his arm and showed his tattoo.  He was on the list.

The Gestapo declared that they would destroy a certain village if the leader of the resistance did not give himself up.  The villagers attacked the resistance headquarters with whatever weapons they could demanding the leader do so.  He turned over leadership to his second in command and surrendered.  He was tortured and killed.  The story was related during testimony at Eichmann’s trail by the second in command.

Eichmann, who consistently claimed only to have been following orders like any good bureaucrat, was convicted, hanged, and cremated.  One of the officials who took Eichmann’s ashes on a boat to dispose of them in the Mediterranean was surprised by how little is left after cremation.  Those of you who watched the video of my spreading the ashes of my friend Louise off San Diego know that I was too.  What is left is mostly pulverized bone.  Louise’s remnants weighed eight pounds if I remember correctly.  The official with Eichmann’s ashes recalled how as a child he entered a concentration camp past a huge mound of ashes of the cremated.  Now he realized that the mound must have been made by tens of thousands of dead.

And all this and more happened during the lifetimes of some of us still living.

There have been mixed reactions to my last two posts.  Some liked them.  Some did not.  Among those who did not is Carol who has forbidden me from posting photos of her again.  She values her privacy which I respect, but it is difficult not to write about my life and not mention her.  However, I will try.  Assume unless you read otherwise that we are a mostly happy married couple, which in this imperfect world probably is as good as it gets.

Lee sent me a link to a song that the most recent post brought to his mind.

I did not know of Frank Turner or this song.  I like it and thank Lee.

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