Friday, 11 February 2022

Resignation. Performance. Art restored to owners. Internment camps and what they tell us about ourselves.

So Cressida Dick has fallen on her sword and decided to hand in her notice. Here’s a Michael Rosen “comment”: 

“Dear Mogg, They may depart, but Boris stays. I am the steadfast Parthenon to the onward rush of  the Tiber. I am the bearer of joyous news: masks off, tests stop. If people drop dead, it’s their fault - coolio! History will slaver me with kisses.

Dido in mango


Still, it’s a shame to see a woman disappearing from a significant position. 

We’ll see what happens to our politicians’ gang! Our Foreign Secretary seems to have been getting her Russia and Ukraine geography in a twist, leading to one wag to comment that putting on a Doctor Zhivago style hat doesn’t make you an expert on Russia and things Russian. She seems to be trying hard to dress like a stateswoman but she does rather lack gravitas in my opinion. 

Maybe it takes years to get yourself a measure of gravitas. Former Prime Minister John Major is doing his best, looking more believable than when he was PM perhaps, standing up and condemning the behaviour of Boris Johnson. Here’s yet another Michael Risen “comment”:

“Dear Major (in truth, Minor, surely)

Your sniping from the sidelines will fail. You forget that in contrast to you, I am the Colossus of Rome, guarding the harbour, visible from afar. Your barely disguised call to my men to mutiny will fall on deaf eyes. 

Con funghi


I’m off to Buckinghamshire to celebrate the 8th birthday of my granddaughter. As my daughter and her two smallest children are going with me, my son is parking me on my co-mother-in-law (we need a term like the Spanish “consuegra”) for sleeping purposes. Last night he warned me not to splutter in my coffee if she expresses her opinion that poor Boris Johnson probably deserved a drink - after all he has those two children, that wife and he’s been working hard in difficult circumstances. We might have to avoid political discussion or at least politely agree to differ.

Here’s a report of a family who have had a painting restored to them 80 years after it was looted by nazis in Belgium, where the painting had been stored after the family fled Frankfurt. The Royal Museums of Fine Arts in Brussels said that they never felt they owned the painting; they were just looking after it until the owners were finally located. The descendants of the original owners would like the other 29 paintings that were taken located and returned to them. In the meantime they have returned to the German state the compensation they received for the loss of that painting.

The article tells us that Gustav and Emma Mayer arrived in Brussels in June 1938, after fleeing through Italy and Switzerland. In August 1939, days before the outbreak of war, they made it to Britain and settled in Bournemouth.

However, once “safely” in the UK, their eldest son, Ernst, was interned with other German-Jewish refugees as an “enemy alien” on the Isle of Man. Here’s another article all about those internment camps.

We seem to have forgotten about those camps, if we ever really knew about them. Not as totally tolerant as we thought and hoped we are.

Life goes on. Stay safe and well, everyone!

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