Seasonal Miracles

18 Dec

Two weeks before Christmas is a perfect time, for those lucky enough who can, to travel. Prices are not yet high season. At the moment, I seem to be one of those lucky ones.Vienna at this time of year is bedecked in Christmas decorations and magical lights. I am thinking of Hanukka. As our politically correct friends would say, “Happy Whatever”. 

Our hotel stands on the corner of Dr Karl Lueger Platz. On the diagonally opposite corner stands what was once the Ephrussi Palace, home to one of the richest families in Austria[6]. The building is being refurbished by Casinos Austria – a sign of the times as to what is now considered “business” in Europe – or is it the “financial services” or “entertainment” sector? Dr Karl Lueger was mayor of Vienna. In 1899 he legitimised anti-Semitism. My thoughts return to home and our very special festival of Hanukka.

Hanukka celebrates an eight day miracle; since I became ill, I can identify eight of my own miracles. I’d love to share them, though my list might not be in order of importance:

     – My wife and three daughters                                                                                                    Perhaps they are four separate miracles as each one of them has shown no limits in what they are prepared to do for me.   

     – My closest family 

By whom I mean my sister, brother, sisters-in-law and brothers-in-law. Each one showing their care and concern right up to the level of life-saving itself.          

    – My extended family and friends

Miraculous to me how you really see who your friends are and the extended family coming through. Kindnesses shown and sentiments said that I would never have expected.

     – Those who pray for me

How many people have said that they are praying for me. This will certainly have to be the subject of a future post. And prayer itself.

     – My doctors and their respective treatments

How will I ever know whether my initial dose of radiotherapy, my on-going chemotherapy treatment, or the medical help, advice and directives I’ve been getting are in fact the miracle I’m witnessing?

    – Incorrect initial prognosis

I’m doing better than the original prognosis. I think I say a little prayer for this more often that I care to admit.

     – The Blog’s ability to help me and to help others

This one is the surprise in the package. The more people that can be helped – so much the better.

     – Ketogenic Diet

Where do I place my dramatic change of diet in this list? Is this the exception that is proving to be the winner at the moment? I have no idea. But I firmly believe the diet is worth a try.


Happy Whatever and sincere thanks to you all! May we light up for each other for many years to come.   

[6] The Jewish Ephrussi family is the subject of Edmund de Waal’s best selling book “The Hare with the Amber Eyes”. Having just read the book, it became one of the reasons we chose to have a week-end break inVienna.     


5 Responses to “Seasonal Miracles”

  1. Elaine Davidoff December 18, 2011 at 10:46 am #

    So wonderful to follow your blog Martin.May the miracles continue!
    Just read ‘The Hare…’ too and would so enjoy seeing those beautiful buildings…not quite what they once were though!It was a fabulous read.
    Much love from Sid and me

  2. Sidelle December 18, 2011 at 10:20 pm #

    what a miracle of a man – counting your blessings at these times… you need to add your spirit to them! love you dad!!!!!!!

  3. Agi Hirshberg December 20, 2011 at 7:51 pm #

    I was wondering what the 2 of you were doing in Vienna this time of year. Bravo for keeping the adventures going and making each day special. Please know you have a friend from Los Angeles as well! If you want the Hollywood adventure, best, Agi Hirshberg

  4. Karen Abel December 24, 2011 at 7:08 pm #

    As I have told you Martin, you write beautifully and this entry was especially touching and wonderful to read. You certainly have many reasons to feel blessed at this time of miracles and Pam and your wonderful daughters were correctly placed at the top of the list!
    I so enjoy reading about your life and gaining inspiration, perspective and warmth from it.
    May the lights of Hanukka shine on you and your family.

  5. Michelle Cheslow December 30, 2011 at 2:45 pm #

    Dear Martin, I have been reading your blog and am awestruck by your energy, generosity of spirit, and personal revelations about your current life. You are a wonderfully engaging writer, and a caring and compassionate person. Your remarkable attitude and fortitude simultaneously inspires and humbles me. I am truly honored to know you. Thank you so much for sharing with us all and may the miracles long continue….lots of love, Michelle & Jerry

Leave a Reply to Elaine Davidoff Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: