HERE IN THE RAINFOREST, 2012

Jeesh! Time flies especially when a year goes by in the course of a week! Here we are caught up to 2012 already!

January 12, 2012

Happy New Year!  One of my resolutions is to be more diligent about my journal; it’s hard to believe eight months have passed since the last entry! What’s been happening? Well, pups of course, and a trip to the States to visit family and friends.  It was great to see how mature my middle-aged sons have become, how much the grand kids have grown, how old and fat my ex-boyfriend has gotten. (My other resolution is to lose 10 lbs.)

But let’s face it; portly or svelte, I’m out of the First World loop. Every time I head north I realize how far I’ve drifted from the mainstream that used to be my culture. My wardrobe lacks bulk, so I’m always cold. The recycled air makes my nose bleed. The over processed food, which I so look forward to consuming, makes me sick. The sedentary lifestyle focused around watching professional athletes play sports on TV leaves me restless.  But because I have spent the last 20 years driving on the left side of the road, it would be just plain dangerous for me to face high speed traffic on the right. I always travel with a long wish list go with a long list of that are either unavailable or prohibitively expensive in the Caribbean, but  I can’t really go anywhere until someone volunteers to drive me–everything is so spread out in suburbia, and everybody’s too busy. Oh, well.  Beyond a trip to my favorite thrift store and the art museum, it’s nice just to spend time just relaxing with the kids.

After spending two weeks in the land of manicured lawns and wall to wall white carpeting, my home in the really real world, as I lovingly call Dominica, looks and smells like a barn in the jungle. But the dogs are all still alive and happy to see me, the river is still running clear, and there is still food falling on my head. Really, what more could an island granny ask for?

February 29, 2012

Leap Year! No wonder everything seems out of whack! So far it’s been a funky dry season here in the rainforest. The gloomy, cold weather that began last December has lingered all the way through February. Dogs are shivering, laundry refuses to dry, seedlings drown in the garden, and I have long since run out of clean socks and sweat pants. What is going on? Usually by Carnival time the cool weather turns around and it begins to warm up. But this year the rain refuses to stop, and the sun refuses to shine. They say there’s been a lot of solar activity. Shall I blame the crummy weather on sun spots? Or is the world heading toward some sort of monumental astrological disaster?

Despite the foul weather during the day, the night sky has been extraordinary. Venus was so bright in the early January sky that I was sure Dominica was being invaded from outer space. The planets have also been putting on a show. Last week, Jupiter aligned itself with a bright orange waxing moon, causing an eclipse-like ring to form around the circumference. In early March, they say the planet Mars will also be visible—a virtual tropical planetarium! But what about lonely Planet Earth?

According to Monument Six, an ancient Mayan stone tablet, the end of the 13th Baktun will occur on December 21, 2012. At that time a mythological god will purportedly descend from the sky, and the sun will simultaneously line up with the center of our Milky Way Galaxy for the first time in 25,800 years. as a result, our sun will appear to rise in the same spot as the center of the galaxy sets. Or something like that. An Islamic prophecy warns us that the end of creation will occur in just about the same way–‘When the sun rises in both the east and the west.’  Kablewi! Are these two predictions just  a spooky coincidence, or do you think 12/21/12  could it really mark the end of the world? Nah.