While swimming in the water of a small beach near Tarraco, I noticed a bottle floating on the surface. The emerging part was sealed with a red material, so I deducted that it was not some trash. Curious, I swam to grab it and saw that it contained a rolled piece of paper insides and brought it back to my towel. Started to be exited, what could that be? A joke made by some kids, a message asking for help, a love letter, or a reward for the one that found it? I had nothing handy to open it, except for my swiss knife which was in the car located a mile away. I decided to postpone the revelation until I got back to town. On the way back, I thought it would be a good idea to find a nice and quiet place for the reading while eating a small plate of their delicious raw “jamon”, so I directed myself towards the Ibericus. It was around 2 PM, and only half of the terrace was occupied. The temperature was 26°, pretty warm for the season and I placed my order. Once served, I took my Swiss knife (not knowing that it would have been the last time I used it, since a zealous border agent, took it away during a check at the airport) and removed carefully the sealing and the cork from the bottle, extracting the paper in it. It was not one but 6 pages of paper, I discovered.
At that moment a young couple with a 2 years old boy, sited next to me. They were tourists, just like me. I didn’t pay much attention since I was about to start my reading, after having eaten half of my dish already. I felt good, nice weather, nice location, nice people and good food. There is, simple moment in life, that gives you the best feelings.
I didn’t even end to read the first page, that the little boy next to me started to cry and scream, which distracted me. Not able to concentrate anymore, I laid the papers back on the table, to resume my lunch and interested me a bit to my neighbors. The couple was in their early 30s’. She was chatting with a friend on her mobile and he was enjoying his food, while the kid was making clear that he wanted some attention. After about 5 minutes of loud complains, the father took a tablet out of his back sack and started to play a cartoon, which seemed to have some peaceful effects on their kid. Time change! At my time we simply used a baby-soother. Unfortunately, the silence didn’t last long. I guessed he saw it many times already. They gave him his bottle, which he threw on the ground. The father gave him a toast that ended near the bottle. They changed cartoon, but the kid was somehow unsatisfied and kept on screaming. He wanted something, but they didn’t know what. A tension started to rise within the couple. I knew their language, but this kind of situation is universal, every parent around the globe was confronted with it, once! We all did our best… Finally, the man sat his son in the stroller and decided to walk around, bringing a renewed silence on the terrace.
I took this opportunity, to pursue and end my reading. Sometimes you feel nice, everything is fine and well, when all of a sudden, even if you didn’t ask anything, something comes up to disturb your joyful state of mind. Here, I refer to the message I found! I will not write you all of the messages, if you have any interest, you will find a copy below, but want to give you a short resumé as well as my impression and opinion.
It was written by a man in his late middle age period. He explained that he has a nice family, some friends and all necessary material things to be happy, but that he, like others before, lost his job and started to think about the meaning of life and the way our society is functioning. Writing about injustice, environment, leaders and powerful, wars, hatred, migration and asking humans to unite in order to make a change of the established global madness that is leading us, according to him, towards an obvious dead end. On the message, I found a bit of everything I imagined when I discovered the bottle.
A joke, because he had to lose his job (selber Schuld, Pech gehabt) to realize that we are not in paradise and that life is tough. He’s writing that the industrial and commercial rules of our society are changing, new ways and process, automation and delocalization, for the sake of the mighty shareholders but destroying jobs and forgetting the human part. Nothing new indeed.
Asking for help, to protect our environment. He doesn’t know that you don’t tell humans what they shall do, since each one knows better as the others, anyway. Today at the beach, a man was smoking and throwing each one of his butts on the sand. On the corner of the square, I see a man sited in his big car, engine running while his wife is shopping, so he can enjoy the air conditioning. Who cares?
Asking for human solidarity! I just have to raise my eyes, to see many flags of this region hanging on the balcony of the houses surrounding the square. They want, like in many countries, their independence from their country. Others are building walls at their borders. At least he’s aware of this since he describes a 45/55 split society. He mentions that less than 20% of the population owns more than 80% of the global wealth and speaks of injustice. Apparently, this didn’t bother him when he was working, just like most of us, in fact. He doesn’t know that last person that used the catchword “stronger together” lost the election.
Somehow it is also a love letter, to humans, our planet, nature, and Wildlife. It’s written like a song, telling a story, with the same chorus coming on, again and again, simply done to make us think it over, I guess.
For the reward, he says that it will need <<sacrifice and suffering>> from a lot of us, to get it. He’s asking for action, asking us to perturb the system, in order to obtain the reward. He doesn’t give much explanation, just guidelines. The way to do it remains our choice.
I was feeling good a few minutes ago, and now I feel uneasy. It’s true that we find lots of “papers” lately. I didn’t know about the Rohingya up to know. Many cities are enjoying temperatures over 50°C (125°F) when others are underwater or megapolis saturated with smog. Taxes evasion from the multis. Fires destroying the nature, reducing shelter for wildlife and rejecting in the atmosphere the carbon it inheld for decades. What have I done! What shall I do, change or keep on singing “don’t stop me now, I am having such a good time”!
I will take action: stop to be a compulsory consumer, start to think about resources with little daily action, such as not letting water runs when I brush my teeth, reduce by half my consumption of meat, have a thought every week for Liu Xiaobo and his wife, who represents all the ones’ that sacrificed themselves for the interest of the community, and take time to check the important information I get, in order to make my own opinions. For action no matter the number, even a billion starts with 1.
The couple next to me is leaving now, pushing the king seated on his throne. He doesn’t know yet, that if humans don’t grow up faster as he will, there will be more obvious reasons to cry and complain later on in his life!