It is high on my list of future destinations to someday be able to enjoy the sheer sinking joys of the Maldives with my child before they are nothing more than a scuba diving destination. I say this crassly as I do not want any island nation to sink, however I am also fairly certain that science and the whole warming of the ice caps in to more ocean water might possibly cause certain low lying, ocean adjacent real estate to need a bit of a hand in the upwards direction if it does not want to end up completely swimming with the fishes.
I have been somewhat focused on the Maldives for a number of years now. I keep a photograph of one of the developments on my refrigerator to remind myself of what is possible and what one of my many goals are. The Maldives, from what I can tell are an idyllic cluster of atoll islands that are just south of India and Sri Lanka. I imagine most of the income for the natives comes from tourism, and I can see why many people would wish to visit such a place. I shall pack a lot of sunscreen however because I have learned my lesson about sun overexposure and would like to enjoy snorkeling with the child in the calm, warm shallow corals without a nasty sun burn to have to deal with.
I have always been a little obsessed with island geography. I did once want to study Polynesian culture at the University of Hawaii, but was slightly deterred by the cost of tuition as an international student.I like everything that works on islands, and I like even more when those islands have adopted largely self-sustaining infrastructures. Desalination
contraptions are right up my alley, as are ocean current turbine systems and utilizing solar and wind power. It is all already just there, waiting to be used, without drilling or digging or much refining, or tailings pond use. Again, don’t get me wrong, at the moment I do indeed drive a car that is fuelled with petrol (and is slowly falling apart).I am part of the issue, and I recognize the role I play. I am not a miracle worker, nor am I a preacher. But because I know I am part of the problem, I also know I (and we) can be part of the solution.
I think on some subconscious level I am so drawn to island nations because I have largely felt like an island myself, my entire life. I haven’t really had anyone or anything to fall back on as it were, and I feel like much can be said for islands. I have also felt like I was sinking on more than one occasion, and by the powers of the gods, the right people have shown up, inexplicably at the right times, with a snorkel, mask and flippers and guided me to a better location.
For the sake of this article, let’s pretend it doesn’t really matter if anyone “believes” in humans’ ability to warm the planet by using various living techniques that cause more stress on the planet or not. I daren’t use the phrase that is balked at by millions because it doesn’t fit our large vehicle driving, constant air conditioned housing, massive amounts of beef eating culture. I feel like it is more important for people to have experiences that show them the beauty and magic that is the natural world that we have at the moment, instead of trying to beat in to someone’s head that global warming (ok, I used it) might be a thing, and it might be something we may contribute to. I feel like it is more worthwhile to educate and allow as many people as possible to see how things could work better instead of focusing on the inherent dysfunction we are all working with. We know things aren’t working, some of us more than others. I really don’t see the point of shouting around saying the same things about how things are not working. I hope to change those shouts in to useable, reliable, easy, cost effective solutions that everyone can use. And you are absolutely going to help me cultivate ideas on just what or how we can do about things, including visiting us in the Maldives.
I feel like when I own some small humble abode on a little island, manmade or not, I would absolutely like to share this with others, with the whole TOLM network of do-gooders looking for an opportunity to explore and understand for themselves that we actually are having an effect on a planet. I was fortunate, when I lived in Melbourne, the city wasn’t quite protected by ozone layer at the time, and was extremely hot in the summer-that I was able to experience all kinds of interesting climate related things. Flash forest fires and floods, as well as inexplicable years long droughts. I tend to remember the population of Australia to be excessively ahead of the no plastic carrier bag idea for shopping and many, many houses already used rain catchment barrels and recycled their grey water waste. I understand these topics are fairly relatively recent to those of us in North America and other countries I am sure. And I know that their success rate and ease of adoptability means not much stands in our way from moving towards more effective uses of resources. I think we have a tremendous amount of ideas and initiatives we can learn from not only other people, but other countries, continents and societies. Perhaps we just need to spend a little time on an island, with our feet firmly planted in the sand and our heads bobbing just beneath the surface of the water, quietly following fish as they flow through the water that gives us life. Perhaps then we will be able to step out of our own selves and our own stress for a moment to start focusing on what we can do, what we are truly capable of, and just how much we could help.
I identify that island life is a passion of mine, as is focusing on how to make something better. What are your passions? Where would you like to go, what would you like to do? Be in touch, I’d love to hear about it.
This and more in the current autobiographical novel The One Life Movement, as well as much, much more in the upcoming sequel. Say g’day and start Your One Life Movement today 🙂
Photo of listing courtesy of Christies Real Estate. Thank you Christies for keeping me motivated!