Saturday, February 21, 2009

Rain was out to the west...had not reached the city as yet. The clouds still left an opening for the setting sun to ignite any reflective surface into a blazing fire orange. As I took the picture, the sprawling city lay just behind me. I was looking at the edge of the frontier. Just beyond the last two skyscrapers lay fertile land for the taking. This picture was taken about 5 years ago. If I were to visit the same spot today more urban landscape would paint the sky.

Is this progress? Some would say yes, I question the need. The city has many things to offer...excitement, employment, incubation of new ideas...but fertile ground and pristine beauty has it's place as well. Our best hope is to strike a balance and insure a future for both.


Ian Buchan said...

Urban Sprawl: the phrase brings to mind the despoiling (or you might call it civilisation of a kind) of our lovely Indian Ocean Coast in Natal. My mother left pictures of camping holidays at pristine places on the coast; and as kids we was taken for the summer holidays to cottages, often miles from anywhere, surrounded by the native dune forests, banana palms, and papaya trees. One could take long walks and see hardly a soul, and very often people from the same towns would meet up there.

The present-day coast is one long conurbation of towns, asphalt roads, luxury high-rise apartments and hotels. It probably offers a very comfortable lifestyle, but it's not the idyllic place I knew. The inevitable consequences of dune sand erosion, sewage pollution and the like, raise their ugly heads, but the property developers made their own troubles, and practically wrecked a sub-tropical paradise, all in the name of mammon.

Dan Felstead said...

Very well put. I love your description of Natal coast of your does sound like a paradise...I would love to see it.