Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Titanic

I listen mostly to NPR while I'm in the car, usually catching only small portions of programs since it never takes me too long to get from one place to another (after living in Los Angeles for a couple years, I see this as a huge blessing).  One of these snippets I heard one day this week while on a work errand put an image in my head that I won't forget.  Some of the explorers who first found the Titanic wreckage were being interviewed, and one of them talked about how, in the excitement at their discovery, it was very easy to forget the human tragedy.

He explained how the hundreds of pairs of shoes they found on the ocean floor got there: For the many who ended up freezing to death in the water, their bodies eventually sank.  He described how, from the bottom looking up, it must have looked like it was raining human bodies as they sank like stones.  Once the bodies hit the ocean floor, animals found their way to them, and eventually all that was left were hundreds of pairs of shoes.  He described the many images of female shoes right next to child-sized ones, the bodies of mothers having rained down on the ocean floor next to their children.  Ever since I first saw as a child that National Geographic devoted to the discovery of the Titanic wreckage, I have had dreams about that event, several a year.  Hearing this story on NPR is not going to help in barring these dreams from my subconscious.

Perhaps instead, I'll focus on my son's blessing before dinner tonight: "Dear God, thank you for Oliver, Mom, Dad, Beti, everything in the whole world except for E.T. and bumblebees and mean words.  Amen."


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