Why didn’t the early settlers to America pay attention to the giant hint about catastrophic weather events on this continent?? The indigenous people had a ‘rain dance’ because we have cyclical episodes of drought all over the two continents. If I had faith in my ability, I would do a rain dance on my back deck because I am so fed up with watering the garden. My sprinklers haven’t worked for a couple of years but I decided during the Pandemic that I would use a hose and be the Greta Thunberg of my cul-de-sac. Our water bill tells me that we are doing the right thing, especially raiding the laundry basket for yesterday’s clothes…that’s my excuse and I am sticking to it. One of the things I loved about Egypt was that it was really hot, not everyone had access to water or deodorant, the trains were jam packed and you had to get used to body odor. It was a sharp acclimation moving to the States – why do people get washed before they go out for a run in Texas humidity? I can smell their Gain detergent on their cute little outfits about half a mile away. Just go out stinky and have a shower when you return. The only friend who felt as I did was brought up in the South African bush and didn’t wear shoes until she was 12. She walked the dog with her dressing gown on…my kind of gal.
Like many of us, during the Pandemic, I watched TV until I was square eyed. I can’t tell you how many National Geographic and Discovery documentaries I ingested. Any archeological program involving LIDAR gets me excited. LIDAR is an acronym for light detecting and ranging. Briefly, the technology allows you to scan a wooded area, for example, and remove the trees digitally to reveal the remains of structures. There have been many recent discoveries in central and south America, showing that there were huge Mesoamerican ‘cities’, for want of a better word. The biggest had hundreds of thousands of people and they were connected to other cities. The Amazon is not virgin rainforest but more a peek into a post-apocalyptic Manhattan. Imagine decayed and fallen skyscrapers overwhelmed with a forest canopy. I was astonished to find out that the Amazon was ‘plundered’ before – once or perhaps more. Vast cities with complicated infrastructure and agricultural methods.
The reasons for their decline are varied but mostly it was climate change made worse by a huge population. If there is no rain, you can’t grow crops and you can’t feed the disgruntled people. At worst war or disease or famine then decimate your population but in the case of the Maya, many of the people moved north into the Yucatan area of Mexico or further afield. In the title photograph, I am ‘dancing’ at a remote pyramid in the Yucatan, devoid of tourists. The area was surrounded by scrubby jungle full of structural remains that complete the large city complex. There are so many pyramids from Mexico to the tip of central America that it is obvious there was, at times, a thriving population. I can only hope that this is a pattern. As a species, we spread out of control, depleting Earth’s resources but then Mother Nature or equilibrium takes over. This is my ‘big picture’ theory and I can’t claim to be an expert just a voyeur of life with a very dark sense of humor. Let’s face it, the other species need a chance.
Recently we had the woodwork painted throughout our house. In the main bathroom, we had all the cabinets painted. Our fantastic white Corian countertop now looks creamy if not a tad yellow. The countertops are 18 years old and I considered getting them coated or replaced. Then I thought, “Is that sustainable?” Right now, I am still in Greta Thunberg mode, but I might eventually cave and get new countertops to fulfill my naïve American Dream. Do I need a refurbished bathroom, though? I would happily spend all the money on a trip of a lifetime but then you have to consider carbon emissions/tax, appalling airports and the possibility of Monkeypox. If nothing else, our newest spreading disease proves that Mother Nature is laughing at us. What else can I throw at the horrible humans?? Monkeypox is a bit like bedbugs – really disgusting but you are unlikely to die from it/them.
I had a colonoscopy yesterday and no one really needs to know that. That said, however, the TWO day Prep and the anesthetic might explain this post… Teddy and I went crazy today and had two lattes that had caffeine in them. I can’t stop writing or talking and poor Teddy had another AFIB incident. This was a minor episode but revelatory (no CAFFEINE for Ted). My mum died of a bowel rupture 20 years ago and every since, I have been more aware of what I am eating. I literally eat like a squirrel – nuts, seeds and fruit. Curiously, I noticed that the seeds were the last to be emitted from my poor body pre-colonoscopy. Despite my healthy regime (I could power a methane plant) my diverticulosis is worse than it was 7 years ago. WTH?? To rub salt in my wounds, the gastroenterologist sent me pictures of my colon with a note to eat more Fiber. If only it was legal to take the notes and shove them up his backside… On the plus side there was nothing else of note and the nausea inducing ‘elective’ procedure is free. More seriously – go get a colonoscopy. It could save your life even if you can never consume lime Gatorade or Jello again.