Since one week I am back at my parents place in Sweden. My first summer in Halmstad in over four years, and the end to our 10 month trip. We spent the last week in Spain around and in Barcelona, and before that I attended a meditation retreat at a Zen Buddhist temple in the Spanish Pyrenees for five days, meditating and participating in the daily chores. A necessary break before returning to what we left in October last year.
Being back in Sweden is a bit strange. It has been the warmest and driest summer ever measured in Sweden. The leaves and fruits are falling to a dry and yellow ground. My parents normally green garden is dead. The prohibition to water and to light fire started already in June and two days ago the government changed the ban to include barbequing of all kinds. Not even at home. Imagine the crisis the Swedish men are going through at the moment.
I talked to my younger brother on phone the other day, living up north they are smelling the burning forests on a daily basis even if they are not living in direct connection to the forest fires. The wells are empty and the government and the farmers union are talking about emergency slaughter of animals. The government has ignored help offered by the Russians to fight the fires, but this weekend airplanes from Turkey will arrive. Ignorance is bliss.
On the evenings I take out my mother’s old bike and bike frenetically along the coast and through the beach forests where we live. So much people, and the heat! I am re-living my youth’s summers, drinking and partying on the cliffs, in the stone quarries in Grötvik or just hanging around at one of the many playgrounds in our area. But I am only watching, realizing that life goes on even if I am here or not- the teens of this hot summer is doing exactly the same things as we did 12 years ago.
Being from Halmstad it is hard to believe how popular this city is during summer. We always made fun of the people from Stockholm and other parts of Sweden invading our beaches during the summer when I was younger but I can understand them. The beaches are full, day and night. People showing of their newest whatever brand clothes, the most expensive rental car they could find and drinking overpriced champagne. Halmstad in a nutshell. So much natural beauty distorted by the decadency of the human kind. I guess the last few months in Latin America at least have made me more aware of how fortunate we are and how we are seem to run in the wrong direction. Take heed, do not squander your life.