Wednesday, April 02, 2014
A stitch in time saves nine? It's the "in time" part that counts.
Orion and I headed out to school this morning in a sprinkle of rain, though there were no clouds overhead. Clouds were moving in over the mountains, which were tipped in snow. A rainbow cut through it all like a bright banner. As I slowed at a traffic light, the brakes whined and I heard the pop of the CV joints. These things must be fixed soon, because it won't take long for them to fail completely, causing at worst an accident or at least affecting the whole car system and bringing it to a halt.
The clouds are brilliantly lit. The desert is beautiful but like the car, there are problems that threaten its dynamic. There is a drought that isn't likely to go away. There are sixty three golf courses in the desert. Closing them and turning off the water that keeps them green will turn these to dust bowls. And one thing we have enough of in the desert is blowing sand.
Then the entire system fails. No golf courses, no visitors. No visitors, no economy.
Could we live with fewer golf courses? Could some of them be used for growing something useful, like food? Is there a solution for the desert? Might we find a way to sustain ourselves? We now face the distinct possibility that we cannot.
Systems fail. In my observations, it seems that the micro and macro tend to mimic each other. Small systems -- like a car, like the health of an individual, a relationship, a business, a family --seem to fail in similar fashion. Things start to go slowly---the suspension, an untreated dental issue, a festering resentment, fewer clients, loss of income. Things break, can't be replaced, adjustments are made and a downhill spiral begins.
Only spirals get faster as they go. We all know the best time to fix something is at the beginning.
Replace the button, repair the cracks. They will only get bigger. This applies to the washing machine that needs bearings and to the economy of a nation that's off track. Or a desert that's based on a climate that no longer exists.
It's very possible that we've broken our desert home. It's possible that we've broken our planet. It's possible that these things are beyond fixing. Or not.
Either way, it's clear to me that it's past time for a very large shift in our thinking. It's clear that if we continue to put off the things we can change, we'll be faced with things we can't.
Does this stuff worry me? Every day. But not all day. I can only change myself and the small bit I can reach. But if I'm doing what I can, I have more peace.
Tell me your thoughts. Do you worry? How is your life affected by the changes, and by the knowledge that more change is coming?
Posted by lisa at 9:18 AM