This post is also available in: Dutch.
Nature –enthusiasts watch it; this one is for you!
I am an experienced train traveler. As a student without a driver’s license I rely on the train to take me every place that is too far for me to cycle in a reasonable time frame. I have been spending plenty of time in trains and at train stations for quite a few years now, and in the last five years the scenery has changed. I see the same here on Curaçao, albeit in the buses instead of the train; smartphones everywhere. Although I find my smartphone a handy little device too, it seems that its constant use has become an epidemic . The body posture of holding your phone up in front of your chest while your head is slightly bend forward while gazing at the screen has become the default posture for many.=
My greatest concern with this ‘epidemic’ is that people no longer have eye for their surroundings. Wherever they are, the scene on the screen always seems to beat the high resolution 3D-image that is called the world. This might not be so terrible on a bus drive or at a train station (although in my experience there is plenty to see there too), but it gets real tragic when people no longer have eye for the beauty of nature that surrounds them. Especially here on Curaçao, where nature is as stunning as it is unique. The smartphone is one of the many technological ‘break-troughs’ which have disconnected people from the world and from nature. With International Earth Day coming up next week (April 22nd), perhaps it is time to reconnect with the natural world.
The Curaçao Footprint Foundation wants to help you reconnect and challenges you to participate in the Re-Discover Your Mondi-Side – 7 Day Challenge! We challenge everyone to make time every day to go out and re-discover the mondi (Papiamento for forest). Participating is a must for every nature enthusiast who feels it is time to reconnect with nature, but also a great activity for anyone who seeks some quiet and reflective moments, or just everyone who wants to exercise in a natural environment! The challenge is quite simple: make time every day, for 7 days in a row, to go out and reconnect with nature at least 30 minutes a day. And here’s the tricky part: leave your phones, tablets, laptops, mp3-players, digital watches and other electronics behind. This challenge is all about nature. The only thing allowed is photo equipment; we wouldn’t want to keep you from capturing your best moments in nature.
Here on this website (http://www.caribbeanfootprint.com/re-discover-your-mondi-side/) you will find everything you need to sign up for the challenge. When you do sign up, you will receive a handy set of suggestions to experience Curaçao nature in various ways. Via Facebook (www.facebook.com/caribbeanfootprint) participants are encouraged to share their pictures and experiences using the hashtag #mymondiside; our team will do so for sure!
Stop screengazing, start stargazing
So there it is. Put your phones away, lower your hands and straighten your necks. Leave Instagram for what it is, the world looks better without a filter. Log out of Facebook for a while, your status update can wait. Stop screengazing, start stargazing. To reconnect with nature, that is the idea. As the intern with experience, I urge you to get on this metaphorical train, because it is taking the scenic route. Join us in the Re-Discover Your Mondi-Side- 7 Day Challenge and let us know what your re-discovered!