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 Overwhelming feeling of hopelessness.

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Posts : 1606
Join date : 2009-09-21

PostSubject: Overwhelming feeling of hopelessness.   Mon May 03, 2010 12:31 am

I came across this onanother forum, the post was posted back in 2008.
However the writer states he felt an overwhelming feeling of hopelessness. Can anyone who has visited the battlefield relate to this?

“A few years ago I visited Isandlwana with my son. Entering the battlefield I felt a strange overwhelming feeling of hopelessness. Immediately on my right was a white painted cairn of a soldier who died where he stood, further along were memorials to those who were killed. Scattered all over the battlefield were more and more white painted cairns, many along what is today called “The Fugitives Trail” On a small plateau on the mountain is a larger cairn where Captain Younghusband died with his troops. Examining the memorials with various names and ages was a young boy aged 19 from Pietermaritzburg. I looked at my son who was then the same age.”
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Neil Aspinshaw


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PostSubject: Re: Overwhelming feeling of hopelessness.   Tue May 04, 2010 1:29 pm

I published a small ditty on the RDVC website some years ago,
[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]

says it all, and no, after visiting the place every year since 2003 it doesn't change its aura.
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PostSubject: Re: Overwhelming feeling of hopelessness.   Tue May 04, 2010 5:31 pm

I visited the battlefield in 1982 for the first time to remember my gr-uncle, Bugler Fred Jackson, who was killed there with the Natal Carbineers. Aged just 16, which he celebrated the previous month.

At that time the only access was via Dundee and Nqutu on dirt roads. It was the most depressing place I have ever visited. The place has a pall of sadness over it. The unerving aspect is that on both my visits the only sound has been the sound of the gentle hush of wind in the grass. There are no birds, no animals and none of the normal sounds of the African veld.
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old historian2


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PostSubject: Re: Overwhelming feeling of hopelessness.   Wed May 05, 2010 2:09 pm

Quote :
They say that about the concentration camps used during WW2

There are no birds
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PostSubject: Re: Overwhelming feeling of hopelessness.   Wed May 05, 2010 8:46 pm

Thanks for your replies. But would members recommend a visit. I don't think i would like to leave feeling depressed, as i'm so interested in this subject.
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Frank Allewell


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PostSubject: Re: Overwhelming feeling of hopelessness.   Thu May 06, 2010 7:08 am

Hi Dave
Yes yes and yes again.
Ive just returned from a visit to the battlefields, I have in fact visited on numerous occasions. And as other regular visitors will tell you there are a lot of feelings aroused by being there.
Feelings of hoplesness are not part of those reactions.
Amazement, a touch of sadness, yes. Go there feel it, feel the silence, the sense of solitude, the sense that your standing on a testament to some very brave men.
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PostSubject: Re: Overwhelming feeling of hopelessness.   Thu May 06, 2010 8:20 am

Well said Springbok. Great photo's but the way.
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Frank Allewell


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PostSubject: Re: Overwhelming feeling of hopelessness.   Thu May 06, 2010 10:46 am

Dave/Old Historian

Im just seen the post comparing it to the old concentration camps in Germany. I was stationed on a camp next to Belsen for a number of years so know the feeling you refer to. But no it isnt that heavy oppresive feeling at all, and yes there are animals wandering around, in fact last week my son was trying to entice a couple of small calves who were wandering in the area.
The site is effectivly a mass grave so it is given the respect due to that situation .
The adjacent village is some distance from the saddle, most visitors go straight there, so ambient noise doesnt travel.
On the Fugitives trail there are small animals flitting around, though seldom seen. At Fugitives drift the atmosphere is of total tranquility, the sounds of the river rushing over the rapids and the local herds.
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PostSubject: feelings of hopelessness   Thu May 06, 2010 2:47 pm

hi Dave .
I havent yet been to Isandlwana but I would think it would be a place where one would have to experience the
feelings it would conjour by actually standing there and taking it all in. I certainly wouldnt put off going for the reason
you may feel depressed , if you are thinking of going " do it ". As you have a profound interest in this battle , along
with many others on this forum , I dont think depression will be one of the feelings you will encounter . You may come
out with relief , that you have finally been there and been able to walk places you have only read about. If I had plans
of going there , in my mind it wouldnt come quick enough . Idea . Hope this makes sense ! Wink
cheers 90th.
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PostSubject: Re: Overwhelming feeling of hopelessness.   Thu May 06, 2010 9:47 pm

I think it would depend on the frame of mind you were in. You good with the thought of standing where brave men fought shoulder to shoulder until they fell.

Or with the thought of where an awful slaughter took place. Maybe those of us who are interested in the Zulu War would not be as affected as someone who’s know nothing about the History of the Battle but only hang on to what they are told during their visit by the tour guilds. I don’t think I would be depressed more excited, knowing I was going to a place where those we discuss fought and died together. Idea
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