You know you might be right Haggis about living in a hard time or living through some horrible ordeal. I have come to this conclusion because I work with seniors and there is no better source of actual history than those that went through it.
One of the seniors that I got to know very well was a tiny little man named Bill. He could have passed for one one those garden gomes. He was 4'9" and if he weighed 90 pounds I would have been surprised. As I got to know him I learned that Bill was a tail gunner in WW2. He saw alot of horror but the worst for him was seeing his friends and comrades die. Bill's plane crashed on a runway on a landing attempt and he broke his back and spent the next two years in a hospital.
Now bill would sit outside all day long, he loved everything nature. In fact some days he sat so still birds would actually land on him trying to get to their feeder. I never knew anyone that had so much love for nature. I believe that he had seen so much horror that he truly could appreciate everything else, and it brought him so much joy.
Bill died last year at the age of 90, I always wondered why he did not have any family, he never talked about it, just said he did not have any. At his funeral I learned that Bill had been a one of the home childern sent to canada from an orphanage in Britian. He was sent to Quebec to work as farm slave at the age of 14.
What I found so amazing in all of this was the fact that he volunteered to go as a tail gunner for the RAF, the very country that sent him off into a labor camp. There was not a bitter bone in his body and no one would have suspected the life he had. I think you call it character, I wonder if he would have had it if not for all the adversity he overcame.
I don't mean to be long winded here, but just let me say I love this place. I have looked at different boards to join but one won me over, there seems to be alot of intelligent people hanging here.