Thursday, May 24, 2012

Hitler's Children


Another beautiful hot day. Hot in the rafters of Old Church Hall, and my brain mainly AWOL during my morning's work, so made off early to the gym and afterwards slunk about not doing very much in the afternoon other than eating ham and salad sandwiches, chatting a little to Sonia who was marvelling at people being in the sea, and saying in her country, Bulgaria, people don't swim much.

I watched a documentary Hitler's Children about descendants of Nazi wrongdoers. Particularly moving sequences of Rainer Hoess going to Auschwitz where his grandfather was commandant. He was obsessed by one photo of his own father as a little child standing by a gate in a pleasant garden. On the other side of that gate was a death camp, a door into hell as the grandson called it. Visiting that exact spot was appalling. His grandfather could be snapping photographs of his children in paddling pools, driving toy cars and so on, while being meters away from chimneys spewing death. The grandson returned, appalled to the scene, where he addressed a group of Israeli students. A survivor of the camp, burst into the meeting and wanted to shake his hand. "I tell them you weren't there. You didn't do it." Rainer in tears absolutely shattered, and they hug.

Listening to Bring up the bodies which is a tad snappier than Wolf Hall in its pacing and is equally absorbing. Less good name though. I doff my cap to Hilary Mantel generally, though. Lorraine home late, and then we worked till almost 11. Me helping put together a little hand out, and doing an illustration and so on. I will be well pleased when her interview is done and we can reclaim our evenings, poor thing is exhausted.

1 comment:

The Kid In The Front Row said...

Just saw 'HITLER'S CHILDREN' -- very moving documentary. Was a beautiful moment when the survivor approached Hoess; wonderful.