Thursday, May 1, 2008

Musings on Mortality

Many times people confide things to absolute or relative strangers for the simple reason they will probably never see them again. No harm, no foul, here's my secret said aloud, so long.

A lovely lady, Dora, confined to a wheelchair, came in with her companion. Both women spoke Polish to one another as we helped Dora to the testing area.

"I will do it myself. Always do for yourself my dear."

Good advice. After the test was complete, I was helping her into her wheelchair when she stopped and looked into my eyes.

"I was in the concentration camps. Sometimes I think I dreamt it. Then I look at my arm."

I answered with a question. "In Poland?"

She nodded.

"Auschwitz was clean. You could eat off the floor. The others were filthy--rats, roaches."

She sat for a few seconds and then said,

"But I am blessed with my daughter and my grandson. I love them so much."

She held my hand and looked into my eyes.

"Remember, do for yourself. Always take care of yourself."

Her companion was back in the room, making sure everything was in place. They left the room, chatting in Polish.

My boss looked at the images of her heart.

"She looks fine to me. What do you say, Vic?"

"Yes, she looks fine."

Then, out of the blue he asked

"Do you know how many people don't know Cherry Garcia ice cream is named for Jerry Garcia?"

This led to a conversation about music, transcending the musical generation gap and this

Full circle from barbarism and suffering to sublimely silly.

I need more cowbells.

Remember the Holocaust~May 1 and always
Remember Tibet

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