Brief thoughts on maps


The young lieutenant of a small Hungarian detachment in the Alps sent a reconnaissance unit out onto the icy wasteland. It began to snow immediately, snowed for two days and the unit did not return.
The lieutenant suffered: he had dispatched his own people to death.

But the third day the unit came back.
Where had they been? How had they made their way?

Yes, they said, we considered ourselves lost and waited for the end. And then one of us found a map in his pocket. That calmed us down.

We pitched camp, lasted out the snowstorm and then with the map we discovered our bearings.

And here we are.

The lieutenant borrowed this remarkable map and had a good look at it. It was not a map of the Alps but of the Pyrenees.

Miroslav Holub 1977

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