I have been enjoying my holiday time home in Canada. I have been walking, reading, doing a lot of eating and visiting my family. Part of my job was to sort through all my stuff that has been sitting in my sister's storage unit for the past several years as I have lived Beijing and then Guatemala. She is planning a move and so asked that I go through everything. I did it last Monday and was amazed how little I decided was important. I will write more about that later.
I found a lot of pictures and cards that I have had a lot of fun going through. Reliving memories of college and friends has been wonderful. I graduated in 1974 and for the past three years we have all been reconnected through Facebook. I have been busy scanning the pictures with my iPad so I have a digital copy.
While I was enjoying this walk down memory lane the Breaking News came on and announced that a plane had gone down in Ukraine and it was feared it had been shot down. All work stopped as I listened to the report and couldn't believe that something had happened to another Malaysia Air plane. I was stunned that something could happen again to this airline. I got as must information as possible but as soon as the news descended into speculation I quit watching. Periodically, I would check the CBC (Canadian Broadcasting Corporation) for the updates but kept on with my activities. I watched the short videos that showed the smoke and passports but in all honesty other than feeling sad that this had happened I kept doing my day to day things.
This all changed yesterday (Friday, July 18th) when I got a call from a friend in Beijing telling me the aunt and uncle of another close friend, who now resides back home in Australia, had been on the flight. Everything seemed to stop. I didn't know these people at all and yet their niece is a very dear friend and her lose almost feels like my loss. It is the first time that something like this has happened to me.
I am sad and angry. I no longer can listen to the “talking heads” on the TV and their endless rhetoric and blame game. 289 people have been senseless killed. Their only crime? Getting on board an airplane to do their job, go home, on vacation, to a conference or a dozen other reasons. I can't look at pictures of passports, black smoke, piles of suitcases without the sense of such terrible loss. I have always understood that families are tragically affected but until this time when it has come to one degree of separation am I beginning to understand how much each life that was lost affects so many. Like a stone thrown into a pond creating endless ripples and circles this crash has reached around the world bringing so many people and now me included to a partial understanding of the loss.
My love and prayers go out to wonderful friend Imelda and her family as they deal with an event that no one should be called on to bear.