It's been wonderful here, with sun, clouds and rain and lots of new life around us. The baby chicks are thriving. When they get larger, we can put the movable chicken coop in our backyard inside of a dog pen. I'm glad we did not remove it or sell it after our dogs died. We'll need to put extra chicken wire around, but this is perfect. It even has a concrete pad. Oh happy happy chickens they will be!
On Sunday we went out to the Maku'u Market, which is very much like open markets everywhere, these days, I guess: a combination food court, farmers' market, crafts and trinket sellers, second hand wares, plants and flowers, musicians and lots and lots of cars and trucks in the parking lot. People come from all over the vast Puna area to hang out on Sunday a.m. I think the market outdraws the churches even in this very pious part of the world. We met Mary and Jim there. Mary is, she says 95% recovered from her bad fall and broken leg. She looked fine and is walking without a limp. I had Peruvian tamales for breakfast. Excellent they were, too. Here are a few pix.
Terry and Jim strike manly poses.
A perfect fit
Later we went over to Jim and Mary's for lunch and enjoyed cooling off in their above ground pool and picking mulberries off their bushes and eating them right then and there. So today it's back to work!
The news is its usual bleak self. I'm reading Stefan Zweig's memoir, The World of Yesterday, about his experiences as a self-described "European" in the years before and between the two world wars. This memoir was published in 1942, when everyone knew that things were bad but did not yet know how bad.
Among the many many illuminations of this book is the thinking of Jewish intellectuals that led to the formation of the state of Israel. This is a reminder that Zionism did not begin with the idea of a special country for the Jews but was originally simply the desire to settle in Palestine. Also, the notion of the "rootless cosmopolitan" originated with Zweig and his peers. So there was this tension about Jewish identity and nationalism going on long before the horrors of the Holocaust. More to say later, after I finish the book. It was published in 1942.
There is a review of Teju Cole's latest book in the NYT, which seems to be criticizing him for being a "rootless cosmopolitan," no longer able to communicate with his own people. This is silly. Bookish people like Cole live in books. That's his home country. It's an anti-intellectual attack and covertly racist, too. Like he's not supposed to enjoy western literature, art and music because his family is from Nigeria!
With my background, I guess I can't enjoy anything but tales of the brave takeover of the American continent from indigenous peoples, going by that logic. Cowboys, trappers, soldiers of the Spanish crown, simpering senioritas, bold Irishmen who could turn their hands to anything. And women cranking out the babies. Right. Urbanization, travel and education gave me a chance to move beyond all that and become "rootless."
I'm reading now about how Zweig went to Berlin in order to experience the cosmopolitan atmosphere there before WW I. The mileau in his native Vienna was cultivated but stultifying, and all his friends had the same background as he did. He had never stopped to consider, until he was in an atmosphere truly open to the world, as Berlin was then, how the Viennese Jewish community was, while rich and culturally advanced, excluded from the power structure. There is so much to talk about in this book, but I must get going.
Links and so on tomorrow.