Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Summer day #40

Yeah, we're definitely in summer.  HOT!

I'd hoped we'd be farther along with our retaining wall project but STUFF has interrupted.  Summer orchestra, summer seminary, summer Cub Scouts, and other summer stuff takes myself or my laborers away. Seeing as how we only work outside in the cooler morning hours, the activities limit our productivity even further.

I finally saw the movie "Lincoln" the other night. Thank heaven for libraries with DVD collections.  I liked it.  Lincoln wasn't some "Honest Abe" archetype - he was a real person working in a real world of dirty politics, and he wasn't afraid to get his hands dirty.  The kids watched the Lego version of Batman.  That was kind of cute.

I'm reading I Will Bear Witness; A Diary of the Nazi Years.  Victor Klemperer was a Romance literature professor at a small university in Germany as Hitler rose to power.  The book starts with 1933 and now I'm to 1938.  As a high school student, I often wondered how the German people could allow someone like Hitler to take power and gradually dominate their lives. This diary shows exactly how it happened.  Everyone thought something worse waited in the wings if Hitler was deposed (Communism!) and in the meantime everyone just "kept their heads down".  Klemperer continually noted how disgusted he was with the politics he saw, along with his own financial difficulties due to having Jewish ancestry, repeatedly.  He didn't make entries in his diary daily, but at least a couple of times a week.  It's difficult reading sometimes because a lot of it is "same stuff, different day" but occasionally he mentioned something that to him, were current events in the newspaper and that to me is an "historical event".  In a way, it's like a Greek tragedy: I know what's going to happen to Germany and to Klemperer, thanks to the preface/biographical sketch, and I read along waiting for the axe to fall.  He and his wife managed to outlive the Third Reich, but the whole time, he expected his life to end at any moment whether because of the Nazis or because of his own perceived ill health.

Long story short, (too late), keeping some sort of a journal is worthwhile and "keeping one's head down" does not prevent it getting chopped off.

Time to send the neighbor kids home.  The noise is getting to me.

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