by Euri Vidal
There is more space here. The water is warmer than it has been in previous years. I liked this area of the ocean, in Antarctica. I used to come here in the summers. There was a large herd of seals, some very tasty. But they are no more. The ice is melting. I feel it through my body. The water is hotter. And not only here. For all the waters where I pass throughout the year I notice it warmer. My body is not used to these temperatures. I’m hot. I am suffocated. I have to travel longer to find herds of seals. I’m very tired. I am often hungry. I can’t find enough food. There are also fewer killer whales. I am a solitary animal, but I get the feeling that there are fewer and fewer of us. I am more alone. I’ve seen it and it’s horrible. How do they hunt us? And yet I feel lucky. We are one of the few whales capable of attacking ships, of facing danger. But those are small fishing boats, they don’t do us much harm. The biggest ones, the ones that really hurt us, we can’t sink them. I wish we could agree with many orcas to attack a large ship. But we are solitary animals.
Is hard to understand. We hunt for food. We are often hunted for pleasure. To have an oil that they no longer need. Some bones they don’t need. To decorate. Unnecessary figurines. Spilled and irreversible blood. Ours. That of the seals, the fish, the animals of the ocean. The creatures of the earth. The birds of the sky. The conquest of the seas, the land and the sky. War and conquest. And we are the killer whales. Ironic, coming from a monkey that not so long ago descended from the trees.
They call us “killer whale”. We kill to eat. What do they kill for? Perhaps they should make use of one of those things they call mirrors. Who is the killer species here? Killer monkey.
Yet, I can’t help to admire them, at times. Those opposable thumbs are so sexy, so useful really. So many possibilities. If only they used to make good. Killer monkey does make good sometimes. But it could be more often. I can’t help but to admire how they cooperate at times. We don’t do it that much.
And the oceans. I can’t describe like killer monkey can. The beauty of the sunrise, the light of the sunset touching the waves that I swim through, the colours embracing the depths of the waters and the speed of the winds. I don’t have the words. I don’t have words. So many words, yet so unimaginative so often, and so wrong. I could live with this planet called Water, even though it’s not just any water. What makes this planet different from all the other planets in the universe, that which makes life possible, large bodies of liquid water on the surface of the planet, that is.
I could live with this planet called Soil. It is fertile earth, after all. But I am not impressed with killer monkey calling it Earth. Any solid planet in the universe could be called Earth. Mars could be called Earth. Sometimes, they are so unimaginative that it’s almost surprising they haven’t called the planet “Iron” or “Magnesium”, or worse, “Rock”. It’s also surprising Mercury is not Earth #1, Venus, Earth #2, their beloved Mars, Earth #3. Jupiter could be Gas #1, and Uranus Gas #2. At least they have the haughty names of Roman gods. Yet, one must feel grateful, that they haven’t called our planet “Stone”. The oceans. The ocean, even. That is what I would call this place. That is the magic of this corner of the cosmos, possibly of the entire universe. Queen. I am her queen. The oceans are my territory, my garden, my house, my home. Everybody’s home.
Killer money wants to travel to Mars. There are millions of species on Earth. There are none in Mars. Killer monkey is responsible for the disappearance of thousands every day. Maybe killer monkey wants to travel to Mars so that it doesn’t need to feel guilty about destroying nature. In Mars, killer monkey doesn’t even need to bother looking away from the annihilation of life. Go to Mars. Nature doesn’t exist there. There is no air, no water, no trees, no soil, no life. No air to pollute, no water to fill with plastic, no trees to chop down, no soil to erode. Maybe killer money can finally be human in Mars. On Mars, killer monkey can have eyes and be blind at the same time. How blissful. But there is no beauty on Mars. But killer monkey doesn’t seem to be bothered. There are no oceans there, and there will never be. Destroy my ocean here, the only place I’ll ever be able to call home.
If only killer monkey could see their prowess, that of contemplating the beauty of this planet that we share, to describe, to study, to get to know. A whole planet bursting to the seams with life. A planet to understand. That is the greatest gift. Now wasted like nothing in the history of the universe. Queen of the ocean. I am jealous of those hands, can dig the land, plant, grow. Eyes that can read. Minds that can learn. Souls that can glow. I’d take killer monkey on a ride. If they let me. We’d sail the ocean. We’d make this planet our home.
Euri runs workshops about communication and behaviour change in relation to climate change. Since 2016 Euri has focused his work on designing and implementing projects at European level.
He has been the project coordinator of “A Tale of Two Futures“, “Environmental Learning Illustrated“, “Breakthrough for Resilience: People, Places, and Communities” and “Sustainability, Heritage, Health“.
He is also co-cordinator of the Icelandic project “Once Upon Your Time: Storytelling for Preventing Early School Leaving“. Euri is coordinating the projects “Youth Forest”, “Build Green”, “Biodiversity Outdoor Learning”, and “Biodiversity Illustrated”.