Thursday, December 13, 2007

Tree Chopper

My wonderful neighbour, Andreas Mikolewicz, a German-Polish-American fellow who is trying his damnedest to "Car-ibb-e-anise" this lovely island, has started to chop down what is left of the local forest.
(Well, it's not really a local forest, it's a couple of bits of feral coconut plantation to the left and right of the road that leads out of GL towards Cloud 9, the 'famous' surfing spot).
It used to be a sort of green forest gateway; an archway of coconut palms leading out of the town.
But then, Andreas 'bought' the land to the left, a couple of years ago.
The local people, through their barangay council, complained bitterly that he left it to waste. The dropped coconut fronds were never cleared up, and other plants couldn't grow through them, so, for about 100 metres on the left hand side of GL's gateway to Cloud 9, there was a vermin-ridden wasteland (rats like coconut-frond-sheltered homesteads).
The inhabitants of Mabua (Purok Alingit) on the right hand side, who have built their huts amongst the coconut trees, without destroying any of them, became a bit concerned. (They have a right to be so; Andreas has cut off their access to their local swimming hole, set dogs on their children, and put up a concentration-camp-style barbed wire fence to keep them off his his 'property').

Now he's chopped all those coconut trees down (I think he really doesn't want to pay anything for 'his own' timber, and probably has plans for a highway strip mall leading out from GL).
If you think I'm exaggerating about the hypocrisy of this fellow, then read his website:
"HAVE YOU EVER BEEN HUNGRY? I mean really hungry – if not picture this!
Mentally place your home in an area without running water and electricity. Now remove EVERYTHING in your house that uses either electricity or running water. Remove all carpeting and stuffed furniture, including the bed. Replace this with a straw mat or cardboard. No floors, no slab, just bare earth and a leaky roof made of leftover tin and damaged plywood. Take out all the screens in your house. While you’re at it remove the windows and the doors. No grass around the house. Got a good picture? Good. Now picture yourself with no car, or bike, or shoes for that matter.
No job, No unemployment or No welfare checks. You have No money, No bank accounts, No credit cards, No refrigerator, No ice and No food. You are hungry, and to make matters worse, your children are hungry. On top of that they are sick, full of worms and usually naked. This is the AVERAGE home in Haiti, Philippines, Africa and India.
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14721 S. Biscayne River Drive
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Tel (305) 687-4107
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1 comment:

deillan said...

I like reading your Blog, it's kind of intreguing at the same time funny and interesting...I think, you're the best jounalist in the island..Keep it up Parker the KIng of Chismiss...
Anyway, my wife is from the island and she loves your stories too--- she opens up your blog when she miss the philippines...
Anyway, how's the weather?

dwhiterock from CA, USA