How often do we tell ourselves the grass is greener elsewhere?
Well I went and took a look.
There is not one blade of grass on the west coast of South America.
Nothing but dirt and sand.
Most of the towns are composed of boxy cement structures. Unpainted.
Some people live in crumbling condemned buildings blackened by mold and the soot of cooking fires. Puddles in the streets hold mysterious liquids.
I have no clue how these people are living or what they do or how they manage.
It boggles my mind and heart to consider the staggering number of disadvantaged humans in this part of the world.
Multiply that by similar places all around the world. It is overwhelming.
Reality check for the privileged North American woman.
I feel embarrassed by my pocket money, my excess, the excess of my first world wealth.
This is not my first glimpse of third world poverty. I’ve seen it on a half- dozen trips through the decades.
How is it that in-between trips, I tend to forget about these people?
I tend to forget how many humans are impoverished and starving.
I tend to forget the planetary picture.
World Hunger stats tell us 1 in 7 people go hungry, and yet 33% of food is wasted.
Half the planet lives on less than $2.50 a day, and 80% on less than $10 a day.
Do you have food, shelter, and a bank account (or money in your mattress / your purse)?
If so you are in the top 8% of rich humans.
We are not the 92%.
I’m not saying this to bring you down but to remind myself that anything I ever complain about is a champagne problem.
We in the 8% don’t know how good we’ve got it.