My host sat down on the patio and sighed happily: "We're in the county!" And so we are -- me for a brief break; she for the six months she spends in southern New England woodlands.
"The country" -- what does that mean? Certainly this is not the city. It's quiet here and the air seems clean.
But "the country" is certainly not wild. It is harsh, rocky farmland reverted to second and even third growth forest in the short span since Europeans took over here. The woods are full of mossy rock walls marking forgotten property lines. The locals love this land and protect it as well they should, but nobody would call it wild. At 65, even I remember the southern New England countryside as a cleaner, greener, less densely populated place.
These reflections reminded me of this article by Christopher Mims in which he seeks to rouse us to understand that humans have changed how the planet works and that it is up to us to ensure we enable it to function if we hope to live on it in any tolerable way. Here's how he demands our attention:
The rest is as challenging as that introduction suggests. He demands that we use our clever brains and powerful technology to envision what a habitable world might look like. We're making the world of the future as we live in the now -- wouldn't it be better choose what it will be like while we still have some memories of the time before humans overwhelmed the planet's balance? Go read it all.
Despite every other legitimate concern, we cannot ignore that our economic and social system is rapidly making the planet less habitable. So I will be posting "Warming Wednesdays" -- unpleasant reminders of an inconvenient truth.