Crying like a baby
It has been an emotional evening tonight. In my earlier blog of today I indicated that I just heard news tonight that my friend Neil passed away, something that is going through my head as we speak.
Before I heard these news I had actually been watching the movie Motorcycle Diaries which has just been released on DVD. I have been meaning to see this movie for a while now, obviously because it would show great footage of Latin America, because it is about a long road trip, a true adventure – something that a travel nut like me would obviously enjoy.
But as the movie moved on to portray significant scenes of Ernesto “Che” Guevara and Alberto Granado in the workers’ selection at the mine, their visit to Macchu Picchu, their stay in the leper colony; you could really see the transformation of the characters. A transformation from a simple travelogue, coming-of-age story of two young men to their (and particularly Ernesto’s) spiritual and political awakening, planting the seed for his future philosophies and actions.
I admit I do not know much about Ernesto “Che” Guevara other than that he was a critical figure in the Cuban Revolution and in Latin American politics in general. Of course I now feel I am going to have to educate myself a little better to really get to know who this famous figure might have been.
What did move me in the movie though was the portrayal of people’s hardships, the workers, the indigenous people, the outcasts in the lepers colony and that Ernesto reached out to them. And I was touched by the actor Gabriel Garcia Bernal’s (of Y Tu Mama Tambien, Amores Perros and Bad Education fame) extremely skillful portrayal of a sensitive young man who is just experiencing a political and spiritual awakening. A man who obviously came from the privileged class in Buenos Aires, an aspiring doctor, who dedicated himself to the cause of global justice, who didn’t shy away from refusing gloves when touching and interacting with lepers, who gave away most of the little money he had on this long road trip to a poor peasant couple who had been thrown off their land.
I found the movie extremely emotional. To be honest, I ended up balling like a baby at the end of it, I was so moved. To me the movie perfectly personifies the human condition, all the good and all the bad that we are capable of as a human race.
In light of my upcoming trip to Cuba I’ll spend some time in the next little while to educate myself about Che Guevara. Given that his name has a very strong ideological connotation, I’ll try to investigate his persona from many different angles to give myself a more well-rounded picture of this fascinating individual.
Let the world change you…..
and you can change the world.