Have you noticed that the newspapers seem to be divided in half with war news and holiday advertisements? But, when I slowly study the ads I realize that war has been in many places since the beginning of time. When I lived in the ski resort town of Whistler many years ago I did not like it nor, had I when I made a reconnaissance visit ( I took a job there). I eventually learned that it was built on a native burial ground. Is it wise for a developer to tear up a cemetery and build houses on the land? The word Sacred comes to mind.
Much has been written about Northern Ireland and the city of Belfast. It receives a bad press for climate but in reality although on the wet side, the climate, especially in summer allows for a lot of activity. I visited the Giant’s Causeway in the middle of winter and would go back again, in winter.
A place that I have written about before, Karlsruhe which I liked so much I even wanted to live there but circumstances intervened and I moved on. Subsequently I have discovered that just outside Karlsruhe, hidden in the hills, was a concentration/death camp from WW ll where many secret agents were murdered, some famous females amongst them. I accidentally discovered this while browsing through the historical section of a book store. I had also been to Baden Baden which is only a tram ride away from Karlsruhe and achieved a life’s ambition to visit a famous Spa. I’ve been to spas, some of the radioactive ones in Italy (Ischia) that were not in old guide books, also Vichy, but without the word Bad in the name it didn’t seem to count.
I was on the verge of relocating to Cyprus when with the initialization of the war in Syria the area virtually closed down. Following that, I was working on going to Ukraine and looking up some family in the South and possibly living awhile in Crimea. The whole area is intrinsically Russian and at least for once in my life if someone asked where I was from, I could honestly say “here”. The same happens in Ireland, North and South, ‘Where are you from?’. Well, Dublin, my father born and growing up before and after 1916, his father on the German front during WWl, my grandmother and her four children enduring another war at home. She, a Scot, disowned by her family for marrying a Southener. My father hating Scotland so much that I actually felt uncomfortable once when a flight I was on was held up in Scotland due to bad weather. My father, a protestant, married an Austrian/Russian catholic and one of his close friends was a Campbell. His mother’s clans were Johnston and MacDonald. Criss-crossing of war zones. My grandmother took her children for holidays to resorts in England.
I have no war documents of my Irish grandfather as both buildings containing them were blown up in London and Dublin but he was one of the NCO’s that figured in the original happening on Xmas Eve that the film Joyeux Noel was based on.
I’m trying to reconcile the concept of holiday locations and war zones, ultimately asking myself what is in reality a war zone and what is a holiday location? Clear the debris, get rid of the land mines, smooth the sand, paint and we’re back in business.
So it’s really a question of time; yesterday was raining; today the sun is shining.
I have recently put on my web site a performance work I did many years ago, ‘Rosary of Time‘. I invite anyone to have a listen and make any comments. Unfortunately my hackers do not allow much information through so don’t be surprised if you don’t hear from me.