28 January 2011

The World As It Is

Even I get fatigued sometimes sitting around trying to arrange the details of a better human world in my mind. It is one thing to speak eloquently of the better world, the "City on the Hill." Politicians must become adept at this. In my lifetime Robert F. Kennedy was the best at it for my money. It is quite another to get the detail right.

Obviously, perfect social justice is impossible. Therefore, in a better world there is only less social injustice and that which remains is of a more benign sort. But what does that mean in practice?

Perhaps, for another example, we can greatly reduce infant mortality. But then at what age is it acceptable for more children to die, as some must? Eight? Twelve?

I always hit the wall rather quickly on this sort of thing. When that happens, I must get out and enjoy the world as it is. Often this involves a walk in the park, Parque Benito Juárez to be specific.

Remember that you can click on any photo that might interest you to see a larger version.

Parque Benito Juárez is a large city block in size. It is planted heavily throughout. There are no open green areas. It is a fecund place with everything from worms to insects to birds and, yes, human beings mating there constantly. You get used to that and simply avert your eyes to give the worms, insects, and birds some privacy.

Yesterday, there was a bonus. Vendors were there setting out their products for the annual plant sale, which is an extravaganza.

 At the risk of playing into a stereotype, there are some incredibly talented gardeners and nurseryman here.

The photos above are of giant violetas, violets.

Various orchids.

I presume many of you are already fans of cactus blossoms--so striking, so short-lived, and sometimes so bizarre, such as these, which I had not encountered before.

I put up this apparently mundane group of flower photos simply to make this point. Each and every plant put out at this sale is perfect. Now, you might say to me, “But Steve, of course they only put out their best here.” To which I would reply that it is still difficult to believe that they can generate the best in such huge numbers.

The potters get their cut of the action, too. See those unfired clay pots in the background?

There were clay pots on display around the basketball court of every conceivable shape and size.

A nice assortment of little guys, all perfect specimens.

This is an assortment of tiny bonsai. And in fact another chapter in my own personal bonsai saga has now opened, but that is for another day.

No comments: