I’d like to think that the place where I live would be quite pretty, especially if it was unmarred by urbanisation.
My house directly faces a stream, which trickles over the rocks and is bordered by a neatly trimmed hedge. On some days, the sunlight bounces off the water and makes our house glow. On some summer nights, fireflies glint amongst the rushes. Right across the stream is a tree with wide, spreading branches, seeming as though it would like to hug our house. Behind that is a small farm, and beyond that – as the Water Rat from ‘A Wind in the Willows’ said – is the Wild Wood.
The Wide World doesn’t keep its distance though. The city I live in is constantly under ‘development’. Concrete mixtures ooze out from noisy trucks – down go the trees, up come the houses; they keep trying to cut down the poor tree in front of our house, but we’ve always managed to stop them. And the dirt goes into the river. Construction workers’ boots, bags of unused plastic powder, rocks, bricks, plastic cups, cutlery and cartons – the list goes on.
Do we move out, or put up a fight? We can’t keep running, can we? But how do we stop them? How can we tell them that we deserve to live in a beautiful world, that money is not as important?