Thursday, January 13, 2005

So I'll actually try using this the way it's supposed to be used. Gotta give it a try some day.

Semester is about to start. Just a few more days and then it's back to teaching. I'm looking forward to the new semester, but I am not sure if my heart is really in it at this moment. Too much has happened over this Christmas break.

Things got off to a great start with the tsunami, of course. Unspeakable, but also incomprehensible. I can't fathom destruction on that scale - 160,000 people is just too big a number for me to wrap my mind around. On one hand you wonder why the media keeps showing the pictures, day after day, and then you realise that things are anything but "over". This is just the start, the dead are the ones who don't have to worry any more. It's not just a matter of feeding people for a while, it's a matter of re-building towns and cities, re-building lives. So much gone so quickly. I keep trying to put it in perspective - what would it mean if it had happened in Trinidad - but the truth is, the settlement patterns in Trinidad wouild mean that the bulk of the population would not have been exposed to the worst of the waves. Of course there is always Tobago - if you think about what it would have done to Tobago...I suppose there would be very little left there.

And then Shah died. A death in the family is always a big deal, but all the more so when it's someone you know pretty well, someone you like. And I suppose it matters when he is the senior person on both sides of the family. Well, both of my father's sides of the family, anyway. He was 85, but was doing well, last I saw him. There was something indestructible about him. I always admired that he got married for the first time after age 60 and yet he still lived to see his children grown and into (if not out of) university. He was not everyone's favourite in the family, but I did admire him, and he will be missed.

Now the latest jolt is that Winston was shot. I don't know how to wrap my mind around that one. It isn't a surprise - the way crime is in Trinidad it's only a matter of time before a business is robbed. But it's far too close to home. I have been there, in the store, many times. He's ok, apparently. It just leaves me speechless. Not good if you are trying to write about something. But speechless I am.

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