In my room upstairs, it’s a big room which I love but I’m constantly hitting my head on the roof. I couldn’t imagine how Drew Barnes would handle this.
I wrote this blog:
For the past couple of weeks and for the next couple of weeks my home is in Zweilütschinen, Switzerland. Which is a beautiful tiny village surrounded by mountains, like literally, I’m not just saying that, mountains are everywhere its incredible. There are several rivers that run straight from the mountains, water falls that are constantly flowing out of the mountains and as I cycle through all this, I’m constantly in awe.
I do take my camera out and get a few photos and videos for the vlog and what not but overall it’s nice to just be there. Sometimes I feel the need to get my camera out and I constantly have to ask myself, am I taking the picture for me or for people?
Yes I want to take the photo and post it to Facebook and Instagram, but why? I’m having a great time where I am, but does that mean I have to prove to everyone on social media that I really am having a great time?
I’m always trying to be more deliberate and thoughtful for myself when I get in those situations. When I see a beautiful mountain with the sun just glowing behind it and I’m surrounded by rivers, waterfalls, beautiful Swiss houses and the lush green grass; I simply look. I observe. I watch. I witness. I enjoy. Once I’ve had my moment, however long it is, then I bring out the camera. Quite possibly the sun could have moved and not of given the right glow or the waterfalls could have slowly dried out and not have looked as intense or as nice as before. Why didn’t I take the photo then? Missed opportunity? Pffft, hell no. These moments are so precious in life, I don’t want the distraction of the camera.
In Zweilütschinen and other neighbouring towns, they can be quite touristy, but that’s what I love about volunteering. Yes, it is cheap and I save quite a lot of money but also I’m with and making friends with the real locals and I have the privilege to experience day to day life with them. I get to try the real typical Swiss food, foods that often wouldn’t be served in a typical restaurant because its designed for tourists needs. A typical tourist wouldn’t want to order Macaroni and Cheese mixed with Apple sauce. Yes, that is a typical Swiss meal. I don’t get it either, but man did it taste nice! And don’t get me started on the chocolate, oh wow, like wow. Wow in reverse. Mom upside down.
Anyways, I’m volunteering on a permaculture farm with a Swiss couple and although my knowledge on farming is quite minimal, I definitely have learnt so much about the environment and natural farming methods in the past few weeks. It’s been very eye opening and a bit of a wakeup call of the world we are living in and the horrible things we are doing to our earth because of convenience, comfortability and luxury. I am more aware of the fact that climate change is definitely a reality but one of the biggest lessons I’ve learnt in the past weeks, is that awareness is the starting point.
When I’m checking Facebook, I see a lot of my friends posting statuses about a cause to raise awareness. And yes, that makes me happy that the individual made a stand and brought this cause to my eyes and everyone else’s. But we post the status, share the photo, share the page or have a brief discussion with our friends and family… and that’s it. The biggest problem I think we have is that there is no actual action. There is no follow up. Lots of my friends did the Ice Bucket Challenge a couple years ago, I was happy for them and if anything, proud. But then I was disappointed that they didn’t know the reason why they were dunking ice on their head. What was the purpose?
I love the idea though, I’m not saying anything negative about these challenges because I think it’s a great way for people to get involved with a cause. But I really do think that lots of people hide behind the word ‘awareness’ and think they are doing their part by simply sharing a photo. There needs to be more.
Gain awareness. Be aware. Stay aware. Then take the next step.