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Archive for September 2008

Hurricane Season

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First there was Gustav, then Hanna and now Ike. To be glib, they sound like a sixties doo wop band, unfortunately they are not. These are hurricanes, some of the worst to hit the region or so we keep saying. Every year we talk about the worst hurricanes, how they get more and more powerful, the havoc they wreak greater than the last.  Have we wondered why the hurricanes are getting worse, because this does not seem like an accident of nature. Or if it is, what might be causing this “accident”. 

Scientists have been tracking weather phenomenon for centuries, from all evidence, it would appear that the world’s weather patterns are changing, as a result of man’s incursions on the environment. Seems Mother Nature isn’t as forgiving as well all hoped.  And that’s the rub. 

Poorer nations will always pay the price for the ambitions of the more powerful. And so, while Florida battens down, Haiti is still suffering. The Turks and Caicos are reeling, most of the houses on Grand Turk damaged.  Cuba, still being pounded as I write this. We in Trinidad are lucky, we’ve not been hit by a major hurricane, but we too feel the effects. The flooding, the high winds and trees falling down, blocked roads, loss of power and water.  But still, we don’t suffer as our neighbours do. 

So tonight, as we all say thanks to the Universe that we are okay in Trinidad, spare a thought to our Caribbean brothers and sisters who are trying to pick up their lives after the onslaught of the hurricanes. The season still has several months to run, and we are all still at risks so be prepared for anything. And remember too, our responsibility to the environment or else the environment might remind us in a big way.

Written by coffeewallah

September 7, 2008 at 11:52 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

After a long day

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Like most of my peers, my hours are long, often leaving home early to return late, after dark. In addition to long hours, the job requires a lot of energy and often leaves me drained. Unlike many of my colleagues, there are no children to be considered or spouse, which actually makes it easier to be taken advantage of, no reason to go home so why not stay on and work?  It can be a lonely life, filled with challenging situations and no release. My solace often, those tired evenings after the long trek home in the now familiar late evening traffic, is the wet nose that greets my hand as I try to open the security gate.

The house is usually in darkness inside with only the illumination from the bulb over the door. The dog is patiently waiting to be let out for his evening run. The joy is apparent in every line of his doggy body, he makes me smile no matter how exasperated I might be. Even when my hip and knee hurt so bad that taking him walkies is a chore. He is happy and he makes me happy.

I wonder then about my friends who have children and how hard it must be for them to leave each day, entrust their children to sitters and caregivers, at least the ones pre-school. And the friends who have to wake their children in the wee hours of the morning to get them to school, who barely see their children when they get home from work. They are growing up without us. Husbands who barely see their wives other than to ask briefly where dinner is or what is happening tomorrow. Wives who feel guilty about how little time they have and try to be superwomen and do it all, burning themselves out. I used to be one of them once. Is it worth it you think?

We all ask, where did the time go? I know the days are getting shorter again, because the setting sun comes through the window of my office earlier now. The year has sped past, soon it will be Christmas again. We find all kinds of ways to complicate our lives. We must do this or have that. But at what cost? Is it better to send your child to a “prestige” school where they spend half their life on the road, having interviewed several kids from so-called prestige schools recently for a vacancy in the department, I was struck by how badly they spoke. It was eye opening. I wonder now what the big deal was and still is. 

As I traverse the highway, making for home that is really a hotel, a place to sleep because I am too tired to do more, there is lots of time to contemplate life.

Written by coffeewallah

September 4, 2008 at 9:22 pm

Posted in Uncategorized