I’m just not ready to zoom in, to zoom into the current Ukraine crisis which I can do very little about.
I watched a film called The Impossible. It was about the Tsunami in Thailand in 2004. An event I remember watching on the news as a teenager. It was around the time some of my peers were looking at doing backpacking as a year out before university,
It was just such a incomprehensible, incapable of being explained or accounted for, thing to have lived through. And I had not realised that it was dramatised into a film.
The family survives, it was their ability to swim that saved them, although they were badly injured.
It made me realise, it was the skills they had, their resilience which got them through a terrible event.
Midway through the film, the mum asks her son to do something, anything, to help others.
The choice to look outwardly when they had their own suffering to bear, gave them strength to continue their own fight for recovery.
Simon Jenkins, a British survivor from Portsmouth, wrote to The Guardian, stating the film is “beautifully accurate”. This was in response to critics commenting that the film is “overdramatic” and “whitewashed“. He says of the comments, “As I must, I’ve never been the sort of person to revisit and analyse events of the past, but some of these articles frustrated me. Had this film been purely about the tale of a western middle class family’s ‘ruined’ holiday then I would have agreed. For me, it was the exact opposite. Rather than concentrating on the ‘privileged white visitors’, the film portrayed the profound sense of community and unity that I experienced in Thailand, with this family at the centre of it. Both for my (then) 16-year-old self and the Belón family, it was the Thai people who waded through the settled water after the first wave had struck to help individuals and families…