Wednesday, December 26, 2012

RICHARD PARKER a love story

I had to dig deep to find this water color painted in India in 1977.

   "Who would want to read a story about a boy in a boat with a tiger?" was the response from a girl who I asked if she had read "The Story of Pi". She was about to leave on a two month cruise in the Pacific. I had just seen the film. I loved the book about Pi and his predator tiger friend Richard Parker so dearly and for about a year actually believed that it was a true story.
     I felt sad when the end came. Wanted it to be a never ending love story. I discussed Pi with my friend Rhoderic over oysters at lunch on Friday. He considers the book a masterpiece and drew up certain conclusions that were  interesting, but different from mine.
    Aside from the great dialog, he pointed out that the boy knowing the danger to his own life fed his predator - kept him alive. Then when they had reached safety, Richard Parker goes off into the forest
and doesn't look back. I told him that I understood. There have been people in my life that  I loved and that I was unable to say good-bye when departure was definitive.
    When I had to put my dog Ruby down ...she could no longer walk...but she could stand. And in the vet's waiting room she stood and faced the wall as if she had been ashamed that the  end of our seventeen year relationship was ending.
     I fancy that Richard Parker emotionally was not able to look back. But that's me. I'm not a cat.

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