Olivia and George Harrison, 2001. Photo: PA.
“‘What’s Christina doing, does she still have her relief organization for the Sioux?’ George knew about the problems of the Native Americans in the USA. Olivia’s brother worked as a teacher with the Navajo and both knew about the catastrophic conditions in the Indian reservations.
‘Yes, it seems to be something like her destiny in life.’
George nodded. 'Yes, that happens to some people, they can’t do anything else then. Actually, every one of us has a role to fulfill on this planet, but only a few people know that. Most think that we’re only here to get a lot of money very quickly and to walk on the sunny side of the street. What Christina is doing surely isn’t easy but it’s admirable. Where does the money for the project work come from?’
I was always amazed by how deeply George delved into a subject when he was interested in it. I told him about the momentary problems in getting enough money, and that Christina wanted to go the reservations in four weeks with a team of experts to build another building for the youth. I told him that the Indians grow industrial hemp.
George chuckled. 'You don’t mean the kind you smoke, do you?’
He knew exactly that I meant that kind. We talked about how much one can make with this environmentally friendly material: clothing, building materials, paper. When I told him the story about how the FBI had mowed down the fields a few days prior to the harvest the summer before, he couldn’t believe it. 'That’s impossible. I thought the reservations were not connected to them. The DEA and the FBI shouldn’t be mowing anything down?’ Unjust things could drive him crazy.
'Yes, and that’s why she wants to insulate this youth building with hash. In Germany, near Karlsruhe, there is a company that makes finished hemp mats. They would donate all the material, but the organization is lacking money for the transport.’
'How much?’ asked George.
'We have an offer from a moving company. Around five thousand dollars. That’s a lot of money, but it has a symbolic value to the Indians, to show what would be possible if the fields were left to them.’
'Call Christina. She should fax me the offer. I have some good contacts to English moving companies. Maybe I can help you and get a better offer.’
I called Christina right away and she was of course elated. Any cheaper offer would be more than welcome.
When I arrived home, Christina already greeted me with a huge smile on her face. What had happened? Christina had, as discussed, faxed the offer to George. Two hours later, his assistant called with the request to be sent to bank account number of Christina’s organization Lakota Village Fund.
'George wants to pay for the shipping costs.’
'But he only wanted to find a cheaper moving service for us?’ Christina was speechless.
'I don’t know anything about that. He told me to send over the money for the shipping right away. Good luck, Christina.’
Well, that was George. And not just him, that’s how all the four members of the Beatles have always been. They help and support things which the public doesn’t even know about.” - Klaus Voormann on a conversation with George in 2001, translated from Warum spielst du Imagine nicht auf dem weißen Klavier, John? (a lengthier excerpt from this occasion has previously been posted at thateventuality here)