2012 03 07
Almeriimar, Ejido, Andalucia, Spain
This year we did things the Hemingway.
In Farewell to Arms Ernest Hemingway had his protagonist alone with his great true love in a cozy mountain shack in an exotic European mountain setting, isolated from society, even the local population, by mountainous snowfalls and force of will. The hero was retreating from the brutality and senseless slaughter of civilization at war and from the ambition of men that initiated such failure in society.
Snowed into his mountain redoubt he found love, peace and the opportunity to reflect. Mainly I remember that the guy drank a lot and spent a lot of time in bed with his great true love.
We know his pain. The crew of Meredith emerges from the grip of Spanish winter isolated from the world, not by snow and distance, but by lack of language skills, lack of communications, lack of transportation and lack of internet.
Moored in a sleepy little coastal town in the foothills of a European mountain range we escape the mundane world left to us by the passage of time, the maturing of personalities and the aging of frames. Denied the diversions of great wealth, not satisfied with the exercise of the meager power amassed during our lives or the diversions offered by the consumerism made possible through abuse of desperate Chinese labourers, we sought something more. We found a quiet winter permitting reading and drinking and spending time in bed (sleeping of course).
It has been a marvellous winter and Spain is an unbelievable place, currently our favourite destination. Spring is upon us however. Our hibernation and months of quiet living and reflection come to an end. Boatwork is upon us.
As I finished Farewell to Arms and was asked by the author to share his character's pain and sense of loss my only thought of the protagonist was this:
"You are an egotistical self pitying ass."