The author with her family.

The picture above is an ordinary family picture. But you must agree with me that made it pleasing to the eye is the abundant greenery at the background.  I am not about to join the band of environmentalists who preach about saving mother nature. I am simply  stating my experience about how trees affect the climate. You see, we live in a highly urbanized and achingly polluted, city.  Every plant or tree in our area is becoming scarce.

Two months ago, I prided myself on the lack of need for air conditioning because our home is adjacent to a vacant lot with trees. Not for long, these trees were cast out and thrown on the rubbish heap to make way for the construction of a four door apartment.

See these pictures taken a month apart:

Notice the same wall and the same blue water tank? It’s just hard to imagine that they took down four big trees in two days.  I almost failed to capture this coconut tree because I was on my way to work. This was the last to be cut down.

So what is my point? The point is, an electric fan will not do anymore. It’s unbearably hot to sleep after the four trees were knocked off their roots. According to the environmentalists, what I am experiencing is called the heat island effect.  Without trees to provide shade, cities and other urban areas are left with streets and buildings which retain so much heat forcing people to use extra power to cool their homes.

The poem written by Joyce Kilmer is very apt:


I think that I shall never see

A poem lovely as a tree.
A tree whose hungry mouth is pressed
Against the earth’s sweet flowing breast;
A tree that looks at God all day,
And lifts her leafy arms to pray;
A tree that may in Summer wear
A nest of robins in her hair;
Upon whose bosom snow has lain;
Who intimately lives with rain.
Poems are made by fools like me,
But only God can make a tree.

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