Sunday, May 4, 2008

Sunset and a view of Corsica from the sea

I never have felt comfortable when I have lived in a place that is landlocked. My childhood for the most part was accompanied by the lullaby of the sea in one part of the world or another. Even when I lived in Nepal, it was on a hill above a river. The Himalayan mountain range was extraordinary enough to inspire me, although I missed the ocean.

Sunsets that do not embrace a sea horizon never have appeared as vibrant or alive to me as those that occur at the point where sea and sky meet. Sunsets viewed from a ship may be the most breathtaking of all...

My first view of Corsica as the sun set was rather significant to me due to my childhood love of Napoleon. This glimpse of the island did not prepare me for the incredible sight of the northwestern cliffs later during the trip, but it held emotional power nonetheless.

I am well aware now of Napoleon's failings and flaws, of the divergences between my own political principles and his campaigns and political philosophy. Childhood heroes and gods never quite can be overturned, however. They occupy a special place in the heart and soul. The Empereur of my childhood is not the Emperor of history. He is far more enigmatic, I suppose, and far more idealistic.

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