Monday, April 13, 2009

What colour are the stars?

So today we went for a stroll in the forest. I haven't got the photos downloaded. It's boys birthday.
Boy was with the 'other' family celebrating in the garden, while I decided it was time to get back on my bike in more ways than one.
It's time to get back to school and get a french piece of paper that proves to the world I am intelligent and worth a decent salary.
It could also be time to knuckle down and write. I don't know how many successful writers won their battles with procrastinism but I am sure there were a few. My problem is, that it hasn't been a battle, it's been a full scale war. I will let you know who wins if I am published :-).
I hopped up on the bicycle today and my legs are still jelly. You see I live on a road that has 13-15% gradient. It's steep, and the only way to be sure of getting home is by going up.
I also picked just after eating a plate of pasta with onions and tomatoes as the time to go. Suffice to say I was back in the house after 40 minutes.

I washed up and loaded girl into the car and lover and I and she, set off for the countryside. A sunny hot drive to the wilderness, over populated by a million others with the same idea.

But still it was quiet. It was tranquil. We had a nice walk, we took some nice photos. We chilled out. It's the first time we have been alone in 3 months, outside, with no commitment to anyone else. It was relaxing.

We are soooooooo unfit.

While there we noticed two guys. Lover saw them first. Militaries, she called them. I looked over to see two world war 2 English Helmets peeking above the ground. I looked closer, one had a camera. I assumed there and then it was two guys trying to write a book, taking photos in period costume.
Later we came upon them again and I stole some photos. Eventually one of them spoke up and I thought I should have asked for permission. Actually he offered to let us take more shots.

He was about 18. He told us about the landings at Theoule, Antibes and elsewhere along the coast during the second world war. He wasn't surprised we hadn't heard anything about it. He referred to Normandy and the thousands of books written about it and the various landings during the war.

He explained the Senegalis story that came from Africa to repulse the Nazi's from France and save Europe. I was gobsmacked.

He recounted how sometimes he gets support, sometimes ridiculed, sometimes people think he is mad. I told him they are badly educated. But then so am I. As a child growing up, the war was portrayed simply from the British American point of view. It was only by meeting people from Russia I learned of her huge sacrifices and now today I learn even more about the sacrifices of boys of colour, who believed the hype.

As I sat there talking to this young man, idealistic, I wondered has anything changed in the 60 or so years? Has the world learned anything? Why are the white people still ridiculing the black and using him to fight their wars. Why more profoundly are we whites aligned with those whites, when our history has more in common with the history of the black man than of any white man outside the shores of my homeland.

I have moved on. I don't truly at this moment identify myself with a country or race. I am in identity limbo. Perhaps it's better that way.
This young mans story and what he showed me today have given me the kick up the backside I needed.
Long live the spring!

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