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2016 February Archive - 100 Good Things


Love our MacRitchie Forest

My other life as a travel and wellness writer recently saw me interviewing the founders of Soneva resorts Sonu Shivdasani and Eva Malmstrom. Malmstrom and I spoke at length about Electromagnetic Field, or EMF in short, and the virtues (or woes?) of going off-grid. At environmentally conscious Soneva resorts, tech connectivity is, for better or worse, limited; instead, accessibility to the pristine nature ahead of you is limited only by the time you have at the paradisiacal locations their resorts are at located in.

To cut the long story short, the inspiring exchange was apt reminder that it is completely within our power to set the tone for the life we want to lead. By limiting tech accessibility at the resort (WiFi connection is only available at the bar and indoor villa areas; the router in your villa can be turned off), the Shivdasanis are making a statement about what they consider a priority.

You must have gone for a walk in nature and emerged reinvigorated. Notice how the mind is clearer and the light bulbs in your head, dimmed from stresses of daily living, will always be lit once again. When you live in concrete boxes and commute in similarly crowded spaces, time spent among flora and fauna can save your sanity.

In fact, “nature deficit disorder” is a term coined by Richard Louv, child advocacy expert and author of Last Child in the Woods, to describe human beings spending less time outdoors and their resulting behavorial problems. Without a doubt, nature is essential to our emotional health.

So we are aghast The Powers That Be are even considering tunneling through the Central Catchment Nature Reserve so commuters can save precious few minutes traversing the island on the Cross Island Line. There are some things in life that are a no-go zone and this is one of those.

MacRitchie Reservoir Park is one of the family’s favorite places for a stroll in nature for so many reasons. It is highly accessible yet incredibly rich in flora and fauna. How many cities in the world can boast such biodiversity within minutes of commute from a busy city center? In a Little Red Dot where everything is manicured to death, MacRitchie forest has a wilderness that appeals to us.

The above unprocessed photo, dated 2011, is timely reminiscence. For a small country with no natural resources, we are puff-up-chest proud such diverse variety of plants and animals are in our backyard. MacRitchie Reservoir Park has history dating back to the 1800s. You don’t build biodiversity the same manner you construct flats and parks.

We love MacRitchie so much it is often our go-to spot for outdoor product photography.

Photography at MacRitchie

We like to think it is completely within the power of Land Transport Authority to set a pace of progress that is expected of developed, civilized societies. Take a walk in the forest, soak in EMF-free environs, take in the diverse denizens of forest. Is a rail line that cuts through a nature reserve a true mark of progress?

Are we so disconnected from nature progress is measured by minutes shaved and money saved from irreversible damage to some of our most pristine ecosystems?

For some perspective, look at the universe from a telescope, go snorkeling, hike to the top of the mountain. The views out there will allow you to see the planet has a far richer life that is not confined to the height of the skyscraper or the length of the most extensive rail system. Conservation is never about monetary gains or losses. Simply put, you and I, First World beings have a responsibility to protect the world we live in.

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