What does working with one's hands or Shell Oil Company in Nigeria have to do with sailing?
28 May 2009 | Denmark
It is all connected, somehow.
Sailing, cruising, downsizing, reducing waste, conserving resources, taking a journey from having work as your life... to work as only a means to an end... and back again to seeing work as something you enjoy, believe in, and find productive and satisfying for your mind, body and soul. That's kind of an ideal, and can obviously only be achieved once one's basic needs are met. But the more basic one's needs, the more possible it is to meet them with the income from a job one enjoys.
..."good food, shelter, and something meaningful to do." - and friends and family.
[This posting references the previously-dated two postings with links to news articles and photos.]
What's happening in Nigeria? I don't know the conversation among Nigerians living near the oil leaks and gas burns and polluted fishing grounds. It's probably about the basics. The lack of basic necessities, in direct contradiction to the wealth being pumped out of the ground. Not only does it seem that none of the wealth is seen locally, but that the direct reverse is the case; they are paying the consequences for someone else's oil and monetary gains.
So, what will happen to Shell and companies like it? Probably not much. But, the market can make a difference. The market being a looming term for all the stuff we buy and the value of the resources it takes to make all that stuff. It comes back to conserving, downsizing, and thinking.
So many things we use are made from petroleum. We try to think about the packaging at the grocery stores where we shop. There is plastic everywhere. Non-recyclable plastic.
People seem afraid to talk to the stores about their supplier's packaging. If there is only one kind of eggplant available and it's wrapped in plastic on top of a foam carton, (which we have seen), then should we choose something else for dinner? Denmark seems to have as much plastic packaging on regular non-organic produce as anywhere else we've been. There is the option of buying organic produce, which often has better packaging, (also more expensive), or of buying from a 'green grocer', meaning a small veggie-only market. They are more likely to sell produce individually, possibly more locally-grown, without the packaging that is common for produce that's been shipped to Denmark from Spain, or even South America.
It's tough when you are on a budget, to change policy through your shopping habits.
Life is a lot tougher for people who live in a place that's been exploited of it's resources so we can have twenty kinds of fresh produce year-round, fish that once sustained a small poor nation, and a cup of daily coffee, and the disposable cup it comes in.
It's not popular to talk about people's coffee. Enough for now. But, have a "bring your own cup to work day"...soon. It's not unsanitary if it doesn't touch the machine. Certainly no more unsanitary than the germs on the money being changed hands.
We will keep thinking and keep trying.
The next posting topic might be about immigration... which is pretty hot whether you're in Denmark or Missouri, U.S., and is also connected to the issues in the posting above. ...the Nigerian woman in the grocery store in Denmark; poverty-stricken Somalia with it's depleted fishing stock; the children's book at the local library that is in Somali and English; the Arabic children's book that begins on the back page instead of the front; the check-out girl at the super-market who wears a head scarf; the political poster on the advertisement board at the train station that says "Give us Denmark back".
It's all a learning process for me.