Sunday, October 16, 2016

Ushuaia An Old Man’s Reminiscence

(2010 A.D.) Ushuaia, Argentina, Dr. Siluk

I am writing a memoir, perhaps with a little description of this far-off city, its prison, its history, its surroundings.  I have written a few before, to which it has little to do with me, and more to do with the place. It was on my three trips in 2010 A.D., one to the capital of the Tierra del Fuego mountains of Argentina, the city being, Ushuaia, it is bounded on the north by a mountain range, to the south the Beagle Channel, to which my hotel room over looked, and one morning I walked down to it, sinking in the icy slush and mud, with my little wife Rose, had she sunk any more, she would have drowned, cute as a sparrow.  My wife is somewhere in the house now, she just brought me my morning coffee (October 16, 2016, 12:04 p.m.) I slept late today, I’m having late morning coffee and pineapple juice, which I have daily, and it’s my breakfast.  
       Every day I write as she goes softly about, doing the housework in our house. I came to Lima, to live in 2006, from St. Paul, Minnesota. Having said all this I want to get back to Ushuaia, if you look on a map it is the southernmost city in the world, a quaint city, and the landscape most beautiful.
        Ushuaia was founded casually by British missionaries, dating back to about 1833.Then in 1896, twenty-three prisoners from Buenos Aires were brought to the city, brought to Ushuaia, to build a prison, and in doing so, built one with 380-single cells, it would house in time 800-prisoners, under the leadership of President Roca. Serial and political prisoners.
       When you’re at the prison, and I was at the prison, inside it, walked around it, the Tierra del Fuego Mountains dominate the scenery. They closed it down, on my birth year, 1947, to my understanding, the townsfolk’s got panicky. With owed right, in that they housed some extremely dangerous criminals, such as Simon Radowitsky, who killed the warden, Lorenzo Falcon, in 1909, placing a bomb in his car, escaping toward Punta Arenas, to which I spent a number of days there myself, in Chile, near there he was caught.  Also, Santos Godino, who enjoyed hanging minors. The irony of his demise is that he, himself was killed by prisoners for throwing a prisoner’s cat inside a wooden stove. For a prisoner, a pet is more like a goddess, or best friend.  In any case, a few have tried to escape this prison, but where do you go? It is 400-miles to the nearest town, and to sleep in those cold cells—for they have no heat—is like sleeping in an open air cave in Alaska.
       So this is an old man’s reminiscence of a far-off city, where the town folks at one time, had prisoners that were a terrible nuisance, and today is a winter wonder land, or more like a winter getaway for those who can endure the trip.