Greetings from my hideaway here on the Nature Isle of Dominica. I am safe and sound with food in the ground, water in the river, and power from the sun. Yes, I live in the jungle, but I’m sorry for the outside world. I hope humanity is able to flatten the curve of this pandemic soon, and I hope you and yours stay safe and well in the meantime. As I write, there are 12 known positive cases of Covid-19 in Dominica. Indeed, this is a time for reflection. I know you didn’t ask for my opinion, but here’s what I think.
There are too many people using up too many natural resources too fast on this generous planet. Earth can barely breathe, so maybe the new novel virus might be nature’s way of warning us to shape up or ship out. Furthermore, there’s too much disparity according to social and monetary privilege between the rich and the poor. Hello. Humanity is not about money and power, it’s about living in a harmonious way with the other inhabitants, plants and animals and minerals, on a planet that would love to sustain us all if we’d just give it a chance.
The image of The Blue Marble as sent back from the moon mission of Apollo 17 in 1972 comes to mind. Imagine: billions of people living on a luminous blue Christmas bauble laced in puffy white clouds floating in a sea of utter blackness called space. Hopefully this virus will act as a wakeup call, a reminder of the fragility of our home, this amazing planet earth. But even after what we passed through with Hurricane Maria, people here in little Dominica still need to learn lessons about the pitfalls of hubris and greed. We like to call ourselves resilient, but without foreign aid, we would still be living under flapping blue tarpaulins. Trump has his 2 trillion dollar economic recovery plan, but without tourism, Dominica’s economy is doomed. Agriculture is dead and our only industry is CBI, Citizenship by Investment. Instead of studying food production, we sell passports to foreign investors looking for a place to launder their money. Imagine, 2.5 billion dollars missing from the treasury before the last election, and now the country is broke.
The bottom line is that until we fall on our knees, plant a garden, and sincerely apologize for turning our backs on Mother Earth, things can only get worse. Thanks for the memories, but now I’m glad I’m old.