Inconvenient Nature

Inconvenient Nature
Photo © Einar Pall Svavarsson

I was running on a treadmill yesterday, easily keeping pace with the fellow in the mirror, neither of us in a hurry. The gym was mid-afternoon quiet, the way we like it, with bright spring sunshine spilling through the windows. Like most, it has wall-mounted televisions and if a game isn’t on you’re pretty well guaranteed to see pretty faces announcing Breaking News!

As we hustled along our paths the muted stories flicked by and nowhere did anything about the I-Can’t-Pronounce-Its-Name volcano in Iceland appear. It’s being treated like any other celebrity—all the rage one moment, on the back pages in the next. You’d think nature would get better treatment.

When I checked the BBC Web site later in the day the only fallout mentioned wasn’t from the eruption. Rather, it was due to the finger-pointing going on as airlines and their customers tried to figure out (blame) whoever was responsible for the inconveniences caused by the volcano they’d suffered. The carriers want money now, the public heads in a basket.

I was sorry for my neighbor, whose planned walking trip in England coincided with the volcano’s eruption, but she’s adjusted nicely (Hawaii as a second option) and considers this simply a postponement. Like the English, she and her friends are showing a bit of resiliency. No complaints from them. Like the farmer in the photo above, by Einar Pall Svavarsson, you do what you do until something gets in the way, and find another way forward, until the next time.

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