I used these two jigsaw pieces to represent the silo and the shark. These two apparently unrelated items have a relationship similar to the puzzle pieces – but at opposite ends of a continuum.
Silos are those grain storage structures I see in the countryside, clustered around the farmhouses. I can see them from different perspectives, but I’m looking at them visually this time. The silo is often the first structure we can see as we drive in the country. Its function is essential but visually separated from plowing, growing, and harvesting. It stands alone, impressive in its height. It keeps the grain safe, dry, and clean. Yet very separated from the symbiotic network of seed, earth, water, and sunshine.
The shark swims to his own drummer. I was listening to an interview by one of the scuba divers/photographers who created the IMAX documentary ‘Blue Whale.’ One of his comments was about his contact with sharks over the years while he worked. He said they always looked very much at home – neither curious nor fearful. Once they sized him up as not food, the sharks went about their business.
From the videos I’ve seen of sharks – excluding the sensationalizing attack-type clips, they seemed content, comfortable in their environment, and finding harmony with other fish. The little fish swim with the sharks, adjusting to their every move – ever aware of their invisible and symbiotic relationship.
Visually they contrasted sharply with the giant silos.
All this caused me to reflect on my symbiotic relationship with the natural elements around me. Water is just one example, but it is necessary to maintain life. Yet, we often treated it with disdain. We think of this precious element as being free.
It is the one consumable we get in almost any restaurant, and we expect not to pay for it. It’s free. We drink water that comes into our house and flush it down the toilet a moment later. We know it isn’t free because we pay a water tax. But it is so cheap; it has very little value.
Much of the water we use is still water when we are finished with it. Think dishwasher, car washing, laundry, and toilets, to name a few. Yet we happily send it on its way into our sewers.
Surely we can do better.
A robust symbiotic relationship with our surroundings will help ensure a sustainable future.
The grandchildren of our society are counting on us.
Please give this bit of a think. What is one change in behaviour you could make to better reflect the priceless value of water? If not water, how about reflecting on how you support a symbiotic relationship with nature in your everyday life?
I’m curious about your thoughts. Please share your bit of a think below.
Photo by Vardan Papikyan on Unsplash
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3 thoughts on “From Silos to Sharks”
Well Glenn, you’re “preaching to the choir” as the saying goes. I grew up in a time when waste not want not was the mantra by which will all adhered. Wasting water of course that had to do paying the utility bill; today it means dafe-guarding our natural resources. Does anyone remember a time when we left home without carrying a bottle water? I was once in an audience when the performer came on stage and said
“ What’s with all the water bottles? This is only a 2 hour show!”
Yes, I carry water with me; it’s the thing we do. But I consciously do not run the tap for washing dishes, teeth brushing etc. If my family has left unfinished water in the glass at meal’s end they are asked to finish it because I can’t throw it down the drain. I’m trying to instil this in my grandchildren too.
I still don’t understand the water bottle thing. I think it might go back to being a cultural artifact. Initially, you were considered concerned or just interested in a healthy lifestyle. No need to waste time in the gym; just carry a water bottle! I know we need to stay hydrated, but out for an hour’s walk along a flat paved pathway probably doesn’t raise a sweat. Fortunately, it doesn’t interfere with my lifestyle. I encourage others to live as they wish.
Posted on behalf of a regular reader:
As children, we were reminded not to have too much water in the bath, because of limitations of the water tank heater…also to dry ourselves with a face cloth first before using the towel (to save on laundry to be done by our mother).