I began the book I checked out of the public library this week:
The Graves Are Walking: The Great Famine and the Saga of the Irish People, by John Kelly.
After I knocked off the first couple of chapters, which were very depressing, I got a phone call from my parents, who had news to share. My Dad, sculptor, saw on the evening news tonight that the foundry which has produced his bronze sculptures for decades burned to the ground this afternoon. They don't have details of loss yet, but "burned to the ground" was what the news reported. "Burned to the ground" could entail a few decades of sculpture molds, and some ~ 13 bronzes Mom & Dad were to pick up next week. That is, in a small word, frustrating.
I went back to my book. I read and read, and then began skimming. Too much blah blah blah and names, when I was looking for details. Details, I tell you! There were gory details in the book, and that's not really what I was looking for. I was looking for a small outline of the dates and history, and some explanation of the goings-on. Ok: the details are gory, the accounts of reports and details are ad infinitum, and...cut to the chase? 1 million Irish died, 2 million Irish emigrated. There was a huge problem of British prejudice. There was a huge problem of disease which was parallel to and perhaps overtook the numbers of death by famine.
So. A depressing book. A sad sculpture phone call.
My parents called again: My Uncle Bob Montgomery, aged ~ 80-something, (not to be confused with my Brother Bob Webster, so you guys don't take this blog post and RUN with it!) passed away this afternoon. It was not unexpected, but who wants to lose a part of one's family history?
Sad for us: Uncle Bob Montgomery
Ugh: Foundry fire
Awful, albeit not so personal as the above two: Irish Famine History
And that's what I have going on this fine Friday evening, the first week of Advent.