if the son has set you free that they had handled nearly a quarter of a billion of animals since the founding of the plant by the elder Durham a generation free fight new tough lecture en ligne more ago. Those were the words that started everything. For two weeks, Dennis taught them his investment rules and philosophy, and set them loose to start trading, each with a million dollars of his money. In vain the frightened Tamoszius would attempt to speak, to plead the limitations of the flesh; in vain would the puffing and breathless ponas Jokubas insist, in vain would Teta Elzbieta implore. No one can get away from it, or even think of getting away from it; it is three o'clock in the morning, and they free fight new tough lecture en ligne danced out all their joy, and danced out all their strength, and all the strength that unlimited drink can lend them—and still there is no one among them who has the power to think of stopping.">
See Exhibit 4. While all four concepts of strategy have succeeded under the right circumstances, today some make more sense than others.
Ignoring any of the concepts is perhaps the quickest road to failure. The concept of corporate strategy most in use is portfolio management, which is based primarily on diversification through acquisition. The corporation acquires sound, attractive companies with competent managers who agree to stay on.
While acquired units do not have to be in the same industries as existing units, the best portfolio managers generally limit their range of businesses in some way, in part to limit the specific expertise needed by top management. The acquired units are autonomous, and the teams that run them are compensated according to the unit results. The corporation supplies capital and works with each to infuse it with professional management techniques.
At the same time, top management provides objective and dispassionate review of business unit results. Portfolio managers categorize units by potential and regularly transfer resources from units that generate cash to those with high potential and cash needs.
In a portfolio strategy, the corporation seeks to create shareholder value in a number of ways. It uses its expertise and analytical resources to spot attractive acquisition candidates that the individual shareholder could not. The company provides capital on favorable terms that reflect corporatewide fundraising ability.
It introduces professional management skills and discipline. Finally, it provides high-quality review and coaching, unencumbered by conventional wisdom or emotional attachments to the business. The logic of the portfolio management concept rests on a number of vital assumptions. Acquired companies must be truly undervalued because the parent does little for the new unit once it is acquired.
To meet the better-off test, the benefits the corporation provides must yield a significant competitive advantage to acquired units. The style of operating through highly autonomous business units must both develop sound business strategies and motivate managers. In most countries, the days when portfolio management was a valid concept of corporate strategy are past. Other benefits have also eroded. Large companies no longer corner the market for professional management skills; in fact, more and more observers believe managers cannot necessarily run anything in the absence of industry-specific knowledge and experience.
Another supposed advantage of the portfolio management concept—dispassionate review—rests on similarly shaky ground since the added value of review alone is questionable in a portfolio of sound companies. The benefit of giving business units complete autonomy is also questionable. Setting strategies of units independently may well undermine unit performance.
The companies in my sample that have succeeded in diversification have recognized the value of interrelationships and understood that a strong sense of corporate identity is as important as slavish adherence to parochial business unit financial results. But it is the sheer complexity of the management task that has ultimately defeated even the best portfolio managers.
As the size of the company grows, portfolio managers need to find more and more deals just to maintain growth. Supervising dozens or even hundreds of disparate units and under chain-letter pressures to add more, management begins to make mistakes. Eventually, a new management team is installed that initiates wholesale divestments and pares down the company to its core businesses. Reflecting these realities, the U. In developing countries, where large companies are few, capital markets are undeveloped, and professional management is scarce, portfolio management still works.
But it is no longer a valid model for corporate strategy in advanced economies. Nevertheless, the technique is in the limelight today in the United Kingdom, where it is supported so far by a newly energized stock market eager for excitement. But this enthusiasm will wane—as well it should. Portfolio management is no way to conduct corporate strategy. Unlike its passive role as a portfolio manager, when it serves as banker and reviewer, a company that bases its strategy on restructuring becomes an active restructurer of business units.
The new businesses are not necessarily related to existing units. All that is necessary is unrealized potential. The restructuring strategy seeks out undeveloped, sick, or threatened organizations or industries on the threshold of significant change. The parent intervenes, frequently changing the unit management team, shifting strategy, or infusing the company with new technology.
Then it may make follow-up acquisitions to build a critical mass and sell off unneeded or unconnected parts and thereby reduce the effective acquisition cost.
The result is a strengthened company or a transformed industry. As a coda, the parent sells off the stronger unit once results are clear because the parent is no longer adding value and top management decides that its attention should be directed elsewhere. A conglomerate with units in many industries, Hanson might seem on the surface a portfolio manager. In fact, Hanson and one or two other conglomerates have a much more effective corporate strategy.
Although a mature company suffering from low growth, the typical Hanson target is not just in any industry; it has an attractive structure. Its customer and supplier power is low and rivalry with competitors moderate. The target is a market leader, rich in assets but formerly poor in management. Hanson pays little of the present value of future cash flow out in an acquisition premium and reduces purchase price even further by aggressively selling off businesses that it cannot improve.
In this way, it recoups just over a third of the cost of a typical acquisition during the first six months of ownership. Like the best restructurers, Hanson approaches each unit with a modus operandi that it has perfected through repetition. Hanson emphasizes low costs and tight financial controls. To reinforce its strategy of keeping costs low, Hanson carves out detailed one-year financial budgets with divisional managers and through generous use of performance-related bonuses and share option schemes gives them incentive to deliver the goods.
If it succumbs to the allure of bigness, Hanson may take the course of the failed U. When well implemented, the restructuring concept is sound, for it passes the three tests of successful diversification. The restructurer meets the cost-of-entry test through the types of company it acquires. It limits acquisition premiums by buying companies with problems and lackluster images or by buying into industries with as yet unforeseen potential.
Why do we resist certain things in our lives? We have a personal conversation about those kinds of tasks that is firmly. Accueil Livres Bonheur et efforts personnels. Longueur: pages 2 heures. A motivational wake-up call for anyone who feels stuck. Ellis also found that the way we think can often be completely irrational. Commencez votre essai gratuit. Page 1 sur 1. En la importancia de actuar, no de solo pensar de forma positiva.
Good read for leisure. Simple wisdom with practical examples. Some parts really resonated with me but other parts make me want to skip to the next page. La gifle dont j'avais besoin pour passer au niveau suivant de la vie. Bishop doesn't just tell you to "never give up" or "the sun will come out tomorrow". And yet somehow the most matter-of-fact person could not help thinking of the hogs; they were so innocent, they came so very trustingly; and they were so very human in their protests—and so perfectly within their rights!
They had done nothing to deserve it; and it was adding insult to injury, as the thing was done here, swinging them up in this cold-blooded, impersonal way, without a pretense of apology, without the homage of a tear.
Now and then a visitor wept, to be sure; but this slaughtering machine ran on, visitors or no visitors. It was like some horrible crime committed in a dungeon, all unseen and unheeded, buried out of sight and of memory.
One could not stand and watch very long without becoming philosophical, without beginning to deal in symbols and similes, and to hear the hog squeal of the universe. Was it permitted to believe that there was nowhere upon the earth, or above the earth, a heaven for hogs, where they were requited for all this suffering? Each one of these hogs was a separate creature.
Some were white hogs, some were black; some were brown, some were spotted; some were old, some young; some were long and lean, some were monstrous. And each of them had an individuality of his own, a will of his own, a hope and a heart's desire; each was full of self-confidence, of self-importance, and a sense of dignity. And trusting and strong in faith he had gone about his business, the while a black shadow hung over him and a horrid Fate waited in his pathway.
Now suddenly it had swooped upon him, and had seized him by the leg. Relentless, remorseless, it was; all his protests, his screams, were nothing to it—it did its cruel will with him, as if his wishes, his feelings, had simply no existence at all; it cut his throat and watched him gasp out his life.
And now was one to believe that there was nowhere a god of hogs, to whom this hog personality was precious, to whom these hog squeals and agonies had a meaning? Who would take this hog into his arms and comfort him, reward him for his work well done, and show him the meaning of his sacrifice?
The carcass hog was scooped out of the vat by machinery, and then it fell to the second floor, passing on the way through a wonderful machine with numerous scrapers, which adjusted themselves to the size and shape of the animal, and sent it out at the other end with nearly all of its bristles removed.
It was then again strung up by machinery, and sent upon another trolley ride; this time passing between two lines of men, who sat upon a raised platform, each doing a certain single thing to the carcass as it came to him. One scraped the outside of a leg; another scraped the inside of the same leg. One with a swift stroke cut the throat; another with two swift strokes severed the head, which fell to the floor and vanished through a hole. Another made a slit down the body; a second opened the body wider; a third with a saw cut the breastbone; a fourth loosened the entrails; a fifth pulled them out—and they also slid through a hole in the floor.
There were men to scrape each side and men to scrape the back; there were men to clean the carcass inside, to trim it and wash it.
Looking down this room, one saw, creeping slowly, a line of dangling hogs a hundred yards in length; and for every yard there was a man, working as if a demon were after him. At the end of this hog's progress every inch of the carcass had been gone over several times; and then it was rolled into the chilling room, where it stayed for twenty-four hours, and where a stranger might lose himself in a forest of freezing hogs.
Before the carcass was admitted here, however, it had to pass a government inspector, who sat in the doorway and felt of the glands in the neck for tuberculosis. This government inspector did not have the manner of a man who was worked to death; he was apparently not haunted by a fear that the hog might get by him before he had finished his testing.
If you were a sociable person, he was quite willing to enter into conversation with you, and to explain to you the deadly nature of the ptomaines which are found in tubercular pork; and while he was talking with you you could hardly be so ungrateful as to notice that a dozen carcasses were passing him untouched.
This inspector wore a blue uniform, with brass buttons, and he gave an atmosphere of authority to the scene, and, as it were, put the stamp of official approval upon the things which were done in Durham's.
Jurgis went down the line with the rest of the visitors, staring open-mouthed, lost in wonder. He had dressed hogs himself in the forest of Lithuania; but he had never expected to live to see one hog dressed by several hundred men. It was like a wonderful poem to him, and he took it all in guilelessly—even to the conspicuous signs demanding immaculate cleanliness of the employees.
Jurgis was vexed when the cynical Jokubas translated these signs with sarcastic comments, offering to take them to the secret rooms where the spoiled meats went to be doctored. The party descended to the next floor, where the various waste materials were treated. Here came the entrails, to be scraped and washed clean for sausage casings; men and women worked here in the midst of a sickening stench, which caused the visitors to hasten by, gasping.
In still other places men were engaged in cutting up the carcasses that had been through the chilling rooms. His cleaver had a blade about two feet long, and he never made but one cut; he made it so neatly, too, that his implement did not smite through and dull itself—there was just enough force for a perfect cut, and no more. So through various yawning holes there slipped to the floor below—to one room hams, to another forequarters, to another sides of pork.
One might go down to this floor and see the pickling rooms, where the hams were put into vats, and the great smoke rooms, with their airtight iron doors. In other rooms they prepared salt pork—there were whole cellars full of it, built up in great towers to the ceiling.
In yet other rooms they were putting up meats in boxes and barrels, and wrapping hams and bacon in oiled paper, sealing and labeling and sewing them. From the doors of these rooms went men with loaded trucks, to the platform where freight cars were waiting to be filled; and one went out there and realized with a start that he had come at last to the ground floor of this enormous building. Then the party went across the street to where they did the killing of beef—where every hour they turned four or five hundred cattle into meat.
Unlike the place they had left, all this work was done on one floor; and instead of there being one line of carcasses which moved to the workmen, there were fifteen or twenty lines, and the men moved from one to another of these.
This made a scene of intense activity, a picture of human power wonderful to watch. It was all in one great room, like a circus amphitheater, with a gallery for visitors running over the center. Along one side of the room ran a narrow gallery, a few feet from the floor; into which gallery the cattle were driven by men with goads which gave them electric shocks.
The room echoed with the thuds in quick succession, and the stamping and kicking of the steers. There were fifteen or twenty such pens, and it was a matter of only a couple of minutes to knock fifteen or twenty cattle and roll them out.
Then once more the gates were opened, and another lot rushed in; and so out of each pen there rolled a steady stream of carcasses, which the men upon the killing beds had to get out of the way.
The manner in which they did this was something to be seen and never forgotten. They worked with furious intensity, literally upon the run—at a pace with which there is nothing to be compared except a football game. It was all highly specialized labor, each man having his task to do; generally this would consist of only two or three specific cuts, and he would pass down the line of fifteen or twenty carcasses, making these cuts upon each.
This floor was half an inch deep with blood, in spite of the best efforts of men who kept shoveling it through holes; it must have made the floor slippery, but no one could have guessed this by watching the men at work. The carcass hung for a few minutes to bleed; there was no time lost, however, for there were several hanging in each line, and one was always ready.
After they were through, the carcass was again swung up; and while a man with a stick examined the skin, to make sure that it had not been cut, and another rolled it up and tumbled it through one of the inevitable holes in the floor, the beef proceeded on its journey.
There were men to cut it, and men to split it, and men to gut it and scrape it clean inside. There were some with hose which threw jets of boiling water upon it, and others who removed the feet and added the final touches. In the end, as with the hogs, the finished beef was run into the chilling room, to hang its appointed time. The visitors were taken there and shown them, all neatly hung in rows, labeled conspicuously with the tags of the government inspectors—and some, which had been killed by a special process, marked with the sign of the kosher rabbi, certifying that it was fit for sale to the orthodox.
And then the visitors were taken to the other parts of the building, to see what became of each particle of the waste material that had vanished through the floor; and to the pickling rooms, and the salting rooms, the canning rooms, and the packing rooms, where choice meat was prepared for shipping in refrigerator cars, destined to be eaten in all the four corners of civilization.
Afterward they went outside, wandering about among the mazes of buildings in which was done the work auxiliary to this great industry. There was scarcely a thing needed in the business that Durham and Company did not make for themselves. There was a great steam power plant and an electricity plant.
There was a barrel factory, and a boiler-repair shop. There was a building to which the grease was piped, and made into soap and lard; and then there was a factory for making lard cans, and another for making soap boxes.
There was a building in which the bristles were cleaned and dried, for the making of hair cushions and such things; there was a building where the skins were dried and tanned, there was another where heads and feet were made into glue, and another where bones were made into fertilizer. No tiniest particle of organic matter was wasted in Durham's. Out of the horns of the cattle they made combs, buttons, hairpins, and imitation ivory; out of the shinbones and other big bones they cut knife and toothbrush handles, and mouthpieces for pipes; out of the hoofs they cut hairpins and buttons, before they made the rest into glue.
From such things as feet, knuckles, hide clippings, and sinews came such strange and unlikely products as gelatin, isinglass, and phosphorus, bone black, shoe blacking, and bone oil. When there was nothing else to be done with a thing, they first put it into a tank and got out of it all the tallow and grease, and then they made it into fertilizer. All these industries were gathered into buildings near by, connected by galleries and railroads with the main establishment; and it was estimated that they had handled nearly a quarter of a billion of animals since the founding of the plant by the elder Durham a generation and more ago.
If you counted with it the other big plants—and they were now really all one—it was, so Jokubas informed them, the greatest aggregation of labor and capital ever gathered in one place.
It employed thirty thousand men; it supported directly two hundred and fifty thousand people in its neighborhood, and indirectly it supported half a million. It sent its products to every country in the civilized world, and it furnished the food for no less than thirty million people! To all of these things our friends would listen open-mouthed—it seemed to them impossible of belief that anything so stupendous could have been devised by mortal man.
That was why to Jurgis it seemed almost profanity to speak about the place as did Jokubas, skeptically; it was a thing as tremendous as the universe—the laws and ways of its working no more than the universe to be questioned or understood. All that a mere man could do, it seemed to Jurgis, was to take a thing like this as he found it, and do as he was told; to be given a place in it and a share in its wonderful activities was a blessing to be grateful for, as one was grateful for the sunshine and the rain.
Jurgis was even glad that he had not seen the place before meeting with his triumph, for he felt that the size of it would have overwhelmed him. But now he had been admitted—he was a part of it all! He had the feeling that this whole huge establishment had taken him under its protection, and had become responsible for his welfare. So guileless was he, and ignorant of the nature of business, that he did not even realize that he had become an employee of Brown's, and that Brown and Durham were supposed by all the world to be deadly rivals—were even required to be deadly rivals by the law of the land, and ordered to try to ruin each other under penalty of fine and imprisonment!
Promptly at seven the next morning Jurgis reported for work. He came to the door that had been pointed out to him, and there he waited for nearly two hours. The boss had meant for him to enter, but had not said this, and so it was only when on his way out to hire another man that he came upon Jurgis. He gave him a good cursing, but as Jurgis did not understand a word of it he did not object. He was provided with a stiff besom, such as is used by street sweepers, and it was his place to follow down the line the man who drew out the smoking entrails from the carcass of the steer; this mass was to be swept into a trap, which was then closed, so that no one might slip into it.
As Jurgis came in, the first cattle of the morning were just making their appearance; and so, with scarcely time to look about him, and none to speak to any one, he fell to work. It was a sweltering day in July, and the place ran with steaming hot blood—one waded in it on the floor. The stench was almost overpowering, but to Jurgis it was nothing.
His whole soul was dancing with joy—he was at work at last! He was at work and earning money! All day long he was figuring to himself. He was paid the fabulous sum of seventeen and a half cents an hour; and as it proved a rush day and he worked until nearly seven o'clock in the evening, he went home to the family with the tidings that he had earned more than a dollar and a half in a single day!
At home, also, there was more good news; so much of it at once that there was quite a celebration in Aniele's hall bedroom. Jonas had been to have an interview with the special policeman to whom Szedvilas had introduced him, and had been taken to see several of the bosses, with the result that one had promised him a job the beginning of the next week.
And then there was Marija Berczynskas, who, fired with jealousy by the success of Jurgis, had set out upon her own responsibility to get a place.
Out of some she had been ordered with curses; but Marija was not afraid of man or devil, and asked every one she saw—visitors and strangers, or work-people like herself, and once or twice even high and lofty office personages, who stared at her as if they thought she was crazy.
In the end, however, she had reaped her reward. The painting of cans being skilled piecework, and paying as much as two dollars a day, Marija burst in upon the family with the yell of a Comanche Indian, and fell to capering about the room so as to frighten the baby almost into convulsions. Better luck than all this could hardly have been hoped for; there was only one of them left to seek a place. Anima And Animus. Manga Art. Anime Cupples. Anime Couples Manga.
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Read the adventures of eleven-year-old Delphine and her younger sisters, Vonetta and Fern, as they visit their kin all over the rapidly changing nation—and as they discover that the bonds of family, and their own strength, run deeper than they ever knew possible.
Williams-Garcia excels at conveying defining moments of American society from their point of view. Like many girls her age in India, thirteen-year-old Koly faces her arranged marriage with hope and courage. But Koly's story takes a terrible turn when in the wake of the ceremony, she discovers she's been horribly misled—her life has been sold for a dowry.
Can she forge her own future, even in the face of time-worn tradition? Perfect for schools and classrooms, this universally acclaimed, bestselling, and award-winning novel by master of historical fiction Gloria Whelan is a gripping tale of hope that will transport readers of all ages. Love That Dog shows how one boy named Jack finds his voice with the help of a teacher, a pencil, some yellow paper, and of course, a dog.
Written as a series of free-verse poems from Jack's point of view, this novel is perfect for kids and teachers, too. Jack hates poetry. Only girls write it and every time he tries to, his brain feels empty. But his teacher, Miss Stretchberry, won't stop giving her class poetry assignments—and Jack can't avoid them. But then something amazing happens. The more he writes, the more he learns that he does have something to say.
And when Elodie ends up alone with a cast of characters that may all be guilty, she has to use her wits to try to unravel a tangled web of lies. Lots of literary inventiveness in the plotting and chunks of very good writing and characterization. It would make one hell of a movie. Or a heavenly one. Take your pick. Next Saturday, in fact. Just before dinner. So the armies of Good and Evil are amassing, Atlantis is rising, frogs are falling, tempers are flaring. Everything appears to be going according to Divine Plan.
Except a somewhat fussy angel and a fast-living demon—both of whom have lived amongst Earth's mortals since The Beginning and have grown rather fond of the lifestyle—are not actually looking forward to the coming Rapture. Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark is a timeless collection of chillingly scary tales and legends, in which folklorist Alvin Schwartz offers up some of the most alarming tales of horror, dark revenge, and supernatural events of all time.
Read if you dare! In this generation-defining self-help guide, a superstar blogger cuts through the crap to show us how to stop trying to be "positive" all the time so that we can truly become better, happier people.
He tells it like it is—a dose of raw, refreshing, honest truth that is sorely lacking today. Manson makes the argument, backed both by academic research and well-timed poop jokes, that improving our lives hinges not on our ability to turn lemons into lemonade, but on learning to stomach lemons better. Human beings are flawed and limited—"not everybody can be extraordinary, there are winners and losers in society, and some of it is not fair or your fault.
Once we embrace our fears, faults, and uncertainties, once we stop running and avoiding and start confronting painful truths, we can begin to find the courage, perseverance, honesty, responsibility, curiosity, and forgiveness we seek.
While money is nice, caring about what you do with your life is better, because true wealth is about experience. Somewhere in the vast Library of the Universe, as Natalie thought of it, there was a book that embodied exactly the things she was worrying about. She also becomes caretaker for her ailing grandfather Andrew, her only living relative—not counting her scoundrel father.
But the gruff, deeply kind Andrew has begun displaying signs of decline. To pay for it, she plans to close the bookstore and sell the derelict but valuable building on historic Perdita Street, which is in need of constant fixing.
Besides, she loves the store and its books provide welcome solace for her overwhelming grief. His young daughter, Dorothy, also becomes a regular at the store, and she and Natalie begin reading together while Peach works. Great plots, fascinating characters, intrigue, humor, danger, love I enjoyed it so much, now that I finished this one, I am going on to the next, then the next This was very original and fun to read.
Give me more! There are a fantastic array of characters - some to love and others to be extremely wary of. There are some you'll change your mind about as more is revealed.
I thoroughly enjoyed reading it and definitely look forward to reading more in the series in future. All it takes is one morning for Sydney Photographer Lily Bianchi's life to go off the rails and over a cliff. A well-dressed English woman turns up at her door, swearing she's a witch. And the craziest part? The Englishwoman tells Lily she's a witch too. Even though Lily has her own plans, nothing seems to go right. Her fun day in London turns into a devastating collision with her past, and super-hot Agent Crankypants is annoying as hell.
Can Lily solve the crime before someone dies? Deciding to have more fun in Westerham, Lily takes up life-drawing classes with her friend Olivia. But trouble isn't far away; the art teacher goes missing after the second class.
Tracking down the art teacher is proving impossible, and the PIB's best lead is murdered before they can find out everything he knows. Yet again, Lily's unique witchy skills are called upon to help. The problem? It's dangerous for her to reveal her talents. She's already the target of a secret organisation intent on kidnapping her, and now those closest to her fear a threat inside the PIB itself.
To help solve the case, Lily makes a dangerous choice: to go undercover with no backup. But has she just made a fatal mistake? So much for witches having it easier. Someone pass Lily a cappuccino, but this time, make it a double. Men in Black. Conspiracy-crazed old ladies. Can a clueless innkeeper catch a killer … and stick to her carefully crafted schedule?
Good thing Susan has her own plans to solve the crime. But is there a government conspiracy afoot? Or is the murder a simple case of small-town vengeance? Susan must keep all her wits about her. Account Options Sign in. Top charts. New arrivals. Free comics. See more. The Clock. Issue 1. Within three weeks, hundreds of millions of healthy people worldwide contract various forms of aggressive cancer, and the proliferation, seemingly a viral outbreak, stumps the best scientific minds available.
But after a leading cancer researcher loses his wife and watches his nine-year-old daughter begin to succumb to the same illness, he must race against the clock to end a global conspiracy that could propel the world straight into WWIII DIE is a pitch-black fantasy where a group of forty-something adults have to deal with the returning unearthly horror they barely survived as teenage role-players.
The Old Guard. But in the 21st century, immortality is a hard secret to keep, and when you live long enough, you learn that there are many fates worse than death. Spawn 1. Todd McFarlane. While a strange assailant stalks the city, ripping out human hearts, another otherwordly being arrives. As his mind reels, our tortured hero remembers that he struck a deal with the devil in order to return to his beloved wife - five years after his death.
Rat Queens 1. Kurtis Wiebe. Who are the Rat Queens? A pack of booze-guzzling, death-dealing battle maidens-for-hire, and they're in the business of killing all gods' creatures for profit.
This modern spin on an old school genre is a violent monster-killing epic that is like Buffy meets Tank Girl in a Lord of the Rings world on crack! Sometimes there was a house, or a man ploughing. At the comer of a field, the inevitable dog awaited the return of the plough, a pool of saliva gathering below his hanging tongue.
As we went on, we could hear the stamp of the cannon growing louder with every minute, and the clicking of the machine-guns.
Every time the ground rose up a little, Huesca appeared suddenly within sight, a city drawn in white chalk, and we seemed to be looking at it near and clear as though through a spy-glass. The next moment the ground would dip again, and so we continued to lose and find Huesca in this way on our horizon. It was seated on a slight hill. On the way other lorries passed us.
When we saw them coming, in a veil of dust, full of soiled militia-men, we raised our fists and shouted out to them:. We saluted the peasants, too, whom we saw from time to time standing on the edge of the fields. They looked at us with their deep, placid stare, standing immobile, and then remembered suddenly and raised a hasty fist like a stage monkey who has almost forgotten his part.
We sang a bit and laughed too much, as always when one is a little afraid. Some of us, who had never had a gun in our hands before, were learning hastily how to load and unload and take aim white the vehicle jolted on. In a moment we turned a bend in the road and saw that the lorries ahead of us had already drawn up. The men were getting down from them. It is really the front, now. The sudden stop, which threw us on to each other, served to hide our emotion.
Eleven lorries were lined up along the edge of the road. They had taken advantage of a group of trees in order to remain hidden from the Fascist aeroplanes. We formed up in fours. The day, with a high blue sky, seemed like a bowl of silence, pierced now and then by a shot from the cannon. The machine-guns, making a noise like typewriters, continued champing, but seemed like a noise outside the bowl, they were so little able to impose themselves in the absolute quiet of the day.
Over there, the black wings of one or two Fascist aeroplanes were drawing arcs on the edge of the sky. A wire fence, dividing off the fields, and the mountain slope before us, are all that remain to divide us from the firing-line.
But now we learn that we are not to climb that slope until tomorrow. We are emergency forces, waiting in the rear. We all piled through the wires in the fence, and began looking for a place protected by trees in which to camp. We threw ourselves down on the ground here and there in the shade, with nothing to do until new orders should come through. It was hot and dry.
Some men went for water, and now that the first emotion had been appeased we began to think about our interrupted meal and to tighten our belts. Calero, coming round and slapping us all on the shoulders, told us we would eat the meal of our lives in Huesca to-morrow. He was standing a little way off, surveying a group who were being given a tardy lesson in the manipulation of fire-arms, and told me that the big attack on Huesca was probably due tomorrow.
We began to climb the slope of the steep hill towards the sound of the guns. Before we had gone a hundred yards, I had had to stop three times to pick the prickles out of my canvas shoes.
Those shoes had seemed so serviceable in Barcelona. One or two more prickles, and we reached the firing-line. I seemed to have seen it all before, though in what film it was hard to place. It was the most conventional war scene imaginable. We had reached a line of men, who were stretched out on their stomachs on the ground, their guns to their checks, while at an interval of every twenty-five yards or so a machine-gun had been planted.
Five hundred yards beyond them we could see Monte Aragon. The fortress, which had held out during the whole of the Carlist War and remained unshaken by all previous revolutions, presented its broad, crenelated face to our guns. As we reached the first machinegun, which was hidden by a high boulder, a long hurrah broke out which wavered over the line of men like wind over corn, and I saw that one of the towers had been blown to pieces.
We were on the crest of the hills, and the fortress rested on the knees of an opposite hill, a valley lying in between. To our left was Huesca, and its lower-lying district had just caught fire from our bombs.
Thick plumes of smoke mounted slowly against a blue screen of sky. Three of our aeroplanes winged over the edge of the town, and after their passage a spout of fire sprang up so high that for an instant the clouds were gilded.
Our hill sloped away and back to the left, and there, where the firing line curved back about a hundred yards, the artillery was at work, tirelessly loosing flights of ammunition against Huesca and Monte Aragon.
Looking down towards them, I saw the snout of cannon protruding here and there among the trees, and a few figures of men. Suddenly an antiaircraft gun vomited about an inch probably 50 yards away from an aeroplane and left a smoke bubble to float in the air. The aeroplane buzzed on undisturbed. As we stood near the machine-gun, sheltered by the stone, I saw a stout person strolling along with perfect composure in the firing-line, stopping from time to time to take notes and look through a pair of field glasses.
I learned in a minute that it was Pico, of our Executive Committee. Everybody was giving him advice. Pico muttered something or other, took down a few more notes, and, obedient like a big child, got down behind the stone.
An aeroplane flew past, swooping down so low that we could hear the pilot calling out to us that the electric plant of Huesca had been hit. The sergeant of the machine-gun section was a German Jew. We stood chatting to him until it was time to relieve the posts.
He did not have far to go to find the men who were to take over. They were there already, lying asleep on the ground, one by each gun ready to take his turn. There were two men to every gun, and one fired for four hours while the other slept, and then they changed. They had been like that for five days and nights, without stopping, without ever moving away from their posts. The sergeant went up to each man in turn, and touched him in a friendly way on the shoulder, or lifted his head in his hands, and said in his strong, gutteral Spanish:.
The men crawled up immediately, like sleep walkers, and took the guns, and their predecessors fell asleep instantly. I shall never forget the face of utter fatigue on a Catalan boy, almost a child, the lids of his blue eyes swollen and red with the strain, who could not wait for the sergeant to come and wake up his partner, and how he dropped the gun and rolled over on to his side, like a bundle of something broken, and slept.
I did not wait for the sergeant, either. I seized the place the boy had left and threw myself face downwards in line between the two sleepers. Resting on my elbows, I pressed the butt of the gun against my shoulder and fired the first real shot I had ever fired in all my life.
We slept that night rolled up in rugs on the side of the mountain, and it was certainly not the next day that we were to have our grand meal in Huesca. For that reason, the sound of a bugle blowing at the unprecedented hour of 8 a. The only excuse for such a bugle tall was a pressing attack of the enemy. As the enemy seemed to be nowhere at hand, once the first moment of alarm had passed and we found ourselves safe, a huge murmur of resentment began, which looked as though it would be slow in dying.
We're only asking for the right to rest. You've chosen the wrong place for resting this time. Just have a look over there. See them? Well, those 'planes are Fascist. We threw ourselves down again under the shadow of a tree, trying to catch up with the sleep which had eluded us. I felt bruised all over. My hip-bone seemed to have been boring into the mountainside all night, and my bones ached to the marrow.
I had never before realised how hard the earth can be. Suddenly there was another bugle-call. This time we were all on our feet in one act, our mess-kits in our hands. A man was leading a line of mules up the slope towards us, and they were loaded with provisions. We gathered round him when he stopped by the ambulance, which was camouflaged under some trees about yards back from the firing line.
How many are we? There are ten in the ambulance, and how many more of you are here? She had moved off a short distance from us, and was squatting with her trousers down and her bare buttocks shining very white in the sun. The eggs gave rise, of course, to all the obvious Spanish puns, of which the women comrades were the butt as well as poor comrade Isidor, with his long tapering neck and too pale hands. I took a man before I took a gun. The day seemed as though it would be calm. We left the others in our sector and set out alone.
There was little movement. We had not much difficulty in getting from one of our outposts to the next. We were going to Tierz, and went along, dodging behind the clumps of trees to avoid the shots on the way, and trying to make ourselves very small and thin and quick at the uncovered places. Tierz is the last little village before reaching Huesca, hanging to the hem of Monte Aragon's skirts.
By going in a straight line from where we set out it could be reached in ten minutes on foot. However, a straight line would have taken us past Monte Aragon which, although we had already taken it from the Fascists in our press, was in actual fact to wait a week longer before our militias ratified the news.
The three men looked out at us, the chauffeur with his long sallow face, and two passengers, one of whom was also dark and, like the chauffeur, obviously not Catalan and the other thin and young with light eyes set flush with his face.
The dark man opened the door for us without a word, and a few minutes later we reached La Granja de Huesca. As we stopped the car to ask the way again, I got out for a moment to ask Villalba for details for the newspapers.
He had fallen asleep like a log, on the spot, two hours after La Granja had been conquered. I had a camera which they had given me for my reporting. His name is Andres Mas, and they call him the Black Cat. You'll be hearing about him, and all they say about his courage and the deeds he has done is true. From there on it's a plain, and the car would be a perfect bull's-eye.
You've got the enemy on all sides of you. The two men in the car were doctors, and the back of the car was full of medical equipment and supplies.
Our conversation took on a general interest concerning a little pile of ashes which we passed on the side of the road, with a partially burned crucifix, which the fire had not managed totally to destroy, sticking up out of it.
This was all that remained of the priest of La Granja. We knew that La Granja was only two miles from Huesca, but coming round a bend in the road we saw Huesca so near to us that, although we were all aware of what town it was, we couldn't help asking each other:.
There was nobody to ask this time. There was only a waste of solitude and the silence of the sun. Our throats went dry when, yards away, a sharp fusillade proved that we had overshot the turn. We swallowed hard and went back, burning the road with our hasty tyres. Nothing tickles the appetite like a nervous shock, and the dinner we ate in Ballestar, having finally found the path, was certainly one of the best I have eaten in all my life.
None of us were able quite to get rid of a nervous and somewhat childish giggle, which pursued us throughout the meal, and throughout the time we spent after it, drinking the new wine of the district. I felt the simile to be well chosen, even if he had said it because he was a doctor. By the time the meal was over, we felt we had known each other all our lives. The chauffeur was particularly unbending, possibly because he came from Andalucia.
Our comrades seemed to have been overcome by their lunch. They had wandered away afterwards to sleep, and now it was already four o'clock in the afternoon and none of them had shown up. We determined to start off, and were walking down the street when I suddenly saw them coming along, yawning, and with their eyes still half shut.
They were profuse in excuses, especially the chauffeur. We began to walk to Tierz, each of us piled up with as many of the medical supplies as we could carry. The captain of the column which was occupying Tierz joined us. He was also bound for the same place and proposed to walk along with us. We were very glad of this, and joyfully loaded his broad back and chest with as many parcels as we could persuade him to carry. He made us take our guns with us, too, against the danger, and this made the trip very heavy going.
We walked out of Ballestar, walking directly towards Monte Aragon. The castle surged up at us, seeming very near now, and the little road appeared to be bringing it on top of us. The path, which still bore traces of a plough, went up and down, dipping and rising, and was sometimes bordered by low bushes behind which, by bending a little, we could feel ourselves in comparative safety. We went along in Indian file, and when we came to the open spaces which offered no protection the captain, who was ahead, speeded up the pace.
At the same moment a few bullets began to fly. Eventually we reached a plantation of maze and there we felt a little more sheltered. Ahead of me, I could hear the captain telling some- thing to the chauffeur:.
He's a most unrepentant huntsman. He winged five of our men this week already in the little spot we've just crossed.
But he can only hit a target if people are walking in a group, because he's shooting at metres. I know all about the business from a prisoner we took this morning. It appears that this priest perches himself up in one of the trees of that little copse every day, with his gun and his pipe and enough ammunition and tobacco to last the day. They bring his food to him, and I hear that he's even built a little platform in the tree for himself, and a rest for his gun. We keep on walking towards Monte Aragon.
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