Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Everywhere is war

For the first time in his life, the proud and persistent father of two - my grandfather - was defeated. He had fought many battles and been badly bruised before, as any warrior has, but in the end he had always come out on top. While there, he was widely admired for this rare quality, but the crisis swept away everything he had built and left him standing all alone. No one thanked him for the many years of devoted service, no one came to him and said "you can't win them all". In an instant, he was forgotten along with his deeds and costly accomplishments.

Up until then he had always and alone supported his family, with money anyway. That was the final frontier of his pride, his last battleground. When the bailiff took over the house and threw him and his children out on the street, he felt violated and crushed in a way he hadn't since joining the social democratic movement decades earlier. It was an invasion, and act of war, and he was too old and too weak to return the fire and retaliate. For him, it was all over.