Old people's beautiful lives March 23, 2010

Here writes a young person, active and sporty. In her prime you could say. Or how is it with the age, really?

Yesterday we saw three versions of the last quarter of human life. Ageing in Germany and in London, ageing in the city and in the forest. We also had a chance to reconsider our opinions of ageing, and to think that perhaps the phenomenon, which Western culture considers almost taboo, is in fact not that terrible. According to film authors Martin Gruber and Lucy Kaye, making these films certainly changed their relationship to elderly people and their attitudes about getting old. As Martin said, the elderly no longer seem to him an indistinguishable mass but are individuals who are experts in their own lives. And the lives in these films are exiting. This is perhaps not only because these people have lived through the second world war, some of them even celebrating their marriage not taking much notice of the bombing. They are the generation who lived from the horrors of war to the welfare of Western society, and perhaps this is why their ageing seems beautiful to our eyes. They are beautiful people.

And yet ageing in the city seems somewhat weaker than in the countryside. Yesterday's films brought that contrast very strikingly in front of us. City people need assistance, someone to hold them, to help them move, to cope with loneliness. In the forests of Siberia, a Mansi grandmother is the one who holds the disappearing world. She cuts down trees with incredible simplicity, goes hunting, not to mention all the indoors works. Because in her circumstances you simply have to make it yourself, otherwise it will not get done. Simply.

Madli Kütt