I was out walking and listening to This American Life on WNYC. The show aired, Captain's Log, was from June 2015. Act I, Cookies and Monsters, was fascinating as it was hopeful. Here the discussion was about Girl Guides (what we call Girl Scouts here in the US). It was an old notebook found in the basement of a Girl Guide center in London that spurred Janie Hampton to begin to make sense of a particular entry:
She wondered about the song.
And it said, we did skipping, and we did knots, and we did all sorts of jolly things. And then I came across this song that they'd written. And it said, "We sang our song yesterday. And it went, 'We might have been shipped to Timbuktu. We might have been shipped to Kalamazoo. It's not repatriation, nor is it yet starvation. It's simply concentration in Chefoo." And I thought, what on earth does that mean? Concentration in Chefoo?
|Mary Previte and siblings on September 10, 1945 eating a meal shortly after |
being flown from Weihsien – “When the plane touched down in Sian [Xian],
the men at the Office of Strategic Services (OSS) base served us
ice cream and cake and showed us a Humphrey Bogart movie. I think it
was “Casablanca.” Kathleen and I slept that night in an officer’s tent
– unaccompanied by bedbugs. The next night – 9/11 – we were home.
We hadn’t seen our parents for 5 1/2 years.” – courtesy of Weihsien-Paintings
I won't say more.
The narrative from Ira Glass and the American Life folks is stunning.
Hope you find some time to listen.