Finding big errors

This is a thank you to the whole business of blogging. A few posts ago, I wrote about Barry in the Japanese POW camp, Chungkai, in Thailand in 1943 and 1944. I mentioned the Thai merchant Boon Pong, and because of your interest in this amazing hero, I did a little research and added a post about him. In the course of that research I discovered an error in the book I have put together using letters and memoirs of that period.

Barry was in his eighties when he wrote about his time as a prisoner. He was in Chungkai camp from July/August 1943 to February 1945. He remembered in detail (far, far greater than anything I have posted) working for the surgeon Marcowitz as he carried out amputations on those men with incurable tropical ulcers. But he remembered this period as the end of 1944, beginning of 1945. Marcowitz left Chungkai in January 1944. It is over the previous Christmas period that Barry worked for him.

I have had to move several chunks of text around, all with some tricky knock-on effects on the rest of the story. But I am so grateful to have discovered this. So thank you everyone.

A little spring cheer to say thank you, a marigold is still blooming in the vegetable garden (and I have been squashing greenfly on the new rose growth today).

The most cheering pre-spring sight I know – winter aconites springing up all over. Sorry it’s not a great picture, but they really are unfurling in every corner of the garden.


19 thoughts on “Finding big errors

  1. A similar story is told in the movie ‘Railway man’. I wasn’t convinced by the movie and thought it did not quite work for me. Perhaps the script wasn’t the best or the acting, especially by Kidman, was a bit woody. The best part was the end when photos were shown of the two main characters who did make up and became friends. Wars are horrible and so futile, yet it seems to go on. Thank Boon Pong for his humanity.

    • I haven’t yet seen the film, but I know the book well. It was on my father’s shelves. I don’t know if they mess with the story in the film, but the original is only too true. At least there was some redemption towards the end.

  2. I think marigolds attract aphids or ladybirds. I was told to plant them between my roses as the protected the roses from greenfly or something. It’s a long time ago so I may be wrong, like Barry’s memory. I shall have to my own research.

  3. Ah that modern media would be so concerned with fact checking and correcting errors, Hilary. As for marigolds, Peggy has discovered it is one of the few flowers the deer herd that hangs out in our neighborhood leaves strictly alone! We grow lots of them. 🙂 –Curt

      • I beg to differ.
        This from Wiki:
        “In the case of marigold, pot marigold (Calendula), a native to Europe, and French marigold (Tagetes), an American native in the same family as the daisy, ( Asteraceae) are very different plants. Calendula is edible and often appears on lists of attractive edible flowers. *Most French marigold varieties are not edible.

        Calendula is also a common herbal remedy used in skin preparations (among other uses). French marigold is a nice companion plant in the garden, makes an effective bug spray and looks lovely in a border. It doesn’t have the herbal range of calendula. Depending on the cultivars involved, both pot marigold and French marigold can look pretty similar”.

        They look totally different even though both orange in colour. We love both of them. The French marigold is very frilly and a dense flower. They can grow quite large. Some also lean towards a more bronze-brown colour.

      • There are hours of fun to had on the naming of flowers, but to cut a long story short, in the UK the common name for Calendula (family Asteraceae, tribe Calenduleae) is Marigold, the common name for Tagetes (family Asteraceae, tribe Tageteae) is French Marigold. So yes, you are right, the ones in the picture are Calendula/Marigold and like you we grow both sorts in the veg garden, though I have never tried to eat them.
        Try talking to an American and an English gardener about Rose of Sharon and see what happens. I did!

  4. History is as the victor writes, n’est-ce-pas? While we try to be accurate, I doubt if one can be 100% accurate regarding events during the most horrific time in our world. Heck, I can’t remember what I did an hour ago. And Boon Pong was an incredible human being.

    • You are so right. History is a snake, and the head and tail can get very mixed up, depending which end the ‘historian’ grabbed. Five minutes ago is sometime too much for me. I am so glad I have been able to alert a few more people to the generosity of Boon Pong and his family.

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