As I watch through my kitchen window, leaves chasing each other in ever decreasing circles before being abruptly and unceremoniously dropped on a whim, I contemplate the affinity between this natural phenomena and life itself. This “whirlwind” comes and goes as it pleases interacting briefly with its surroundings, dumping its detritus without fear or favour. Trying to control this tour de force by diverting, blocking or shielding ourselves from its effects would not only give us respite but would instil a sense of achievement in the short term but make no mistake it can ultimately never be tamed.
Maybe we should take the approach of the free spirit and ride with the wind or try to harness its power as we do with the ever encroaching wind farms converting its majesty to a useful source of energy. Whichever way we rationalise our feelings and emotions this metaphor of our current situation has no simple solution nor is it to be viewed as a one off, as the tentacles of globalisation reach out and increase their stranglehold on the world inevitably this leads to an increased risk of sharing more than just trade and tourism.
The world is changing in ways that wouldn’t have seemed feasible a few decades ago and those who have embraced change and the momentum of technological advancement will now look to science and technology to solve the world’s crises, but the one thing we should take and learn from all of this is, we truly are all in this together and that the last decade of promoting self whether through social media or introspective governmental stratagem isn’t working not only are we harming ourselves but also the environment and the very planet on which we all live and share.
There is no quick and easy fix here, personally I think we should start by reconnecting locally again, accept that it’s not normal to have certain foods available all year round, bring back seasonality and sustainability into our eating habits source our food more locally supporting our local farmers, growers the high street and small artisan businesses. The large out of town supermarkets have created a monster that is out of control raising and not managing the expectations of a nation, the offshoot being the ugly scenes of panic buying and hoarding we have all been party to in the last few weeks.
Anyway here we all are dwelling and contemplating in imposed isolation wondering how long all this will last and whether we will ever feel “safe” again, all I know is as sure as the wind blows we will endure and come out the other side possibly wiser but more cautionary and carry on with our lives and after a number of months probably start to forget as is the human trait and then after a while longer it will become a distant memory and feel like it never actually happened, Ho hum……..
© M.J. Sabine 2020