On 01.02.02, I was diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer. Too late for surgery, I had chemotherapy, which failed. In May the chemotherapy was changed and I was soon in remission which was celebrated and welcome and lasted nine years - until October 2011. There was progression in 2011 so more treatment was indicated and I am now back in partial remission. But I'm not only a cancer patient - I also enjoy my family, walk my dogs and am learning to draw and paint. Life is good!

Monday, August 30, 2010

To survive

It's probably not surprising that I thrive on survival stories. I even read books where the main character doesn't survive but makes a valiant effort nonetheless.

My favorite in the genre is A STORY OF A SHIPWRECKED SAILOR, by Gabriel García Márquez. Translated from the original Spanish the title varies somewhat, but that's the title of the copy I have. I learned about it back in the 1980s when it was first written. I was a student in a Spanish class and we read it over several weeks. Since it's only 106 pages, that's doable even in a foreign language.

Then I read it in English. A couple years later I reread it. And this week I read it again, it's that kind of book. My instructor said it was fiction and she was adamant, but the back cover claims it as nonfiction and everything I've recently read tells me the tale is rooted in fact. There was a ship, there was some roiling of the ocean, eight men did fall overboard and one lived to tell his story to Márquez who eventually set it down in print for us. In the meantime, it was a newspaper saga because the tragedy was of great interest to the Columbians who were on center stage for where it all came about.

That's as much as I'm going to give away. It's a page-turner, I can promise you that.

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