Thursday, 4 June 2015
A Cave And Neanderthals
Marc and his companions shelter and cook in a cave, a scenario familiar from many works of adventure fiction but here written really well, with details of how the meal is prepared.
Meanwhile, the Russian pilot, Binkis, is a captive of the Neanderthals, whose sordid village life makes us appreciate by contrast the amenities of human civilization:
"...the stunning urine-feces-rotting-food-sweat fetor..." (p. 64);
"...roaches and flies were inescapable. Dozens were swarming around the scraps of his dinner in the gourd bowl by the door, consuming the last of the rancid fish-and-roots stew." (ibid.);
"...a few cripples or older males slowly starved to death." (ibid.)
We hope, first, that intelligence exists on another planet and, secondly, that it has advanced far beyond such disgusting disease and dirt.