Continuation of our series, see previous post.
The world as we know it has changed. Two weeks ago, I was running around managing my personal schedule, work schedule, child’s schedule, husband’s schedule, social schedule, dog’s schedule, schedules… schedules… schedules!
Today, I am sitting, staring at my computer, thinking of what my next article should be. I have nowhere I can be, nowhere I can go, no classes scheduled, no meetings to run to. But, today, life is not simple. So my series about a simple life suddenly feels irrelevant… life today, is scary and unpredictable.
The entire country is locked down. That is 1.3 billion people who are suddenly in an unprecedented situation.
So what is relevant to write about today?
I spoke about a topic a few months ago, in November, about communities and circular economies (read article here). That article actually shockingly landed us in a world of trouble with many social media websites blocking our entire website!! An over-reaction? Perhaps! The reaction, in my opinion, stemmed from insecurity in a world where the economy is a pyramid.
But circular economies and communities are more relevant today than ever before. The police are telling us to walk to our local grocery store, to shop for vegetables and fruits at the little handcart down the road. Societies are behaving like communities, protecting each other, following specific norms to ensure all are safe. It has taken a virus, to bring every thing to a grinding halt. But we are finding ingenious ways to continue to support each other. We are seeing so much goodwill on the rise. A virus is beginning to show real humanity, that it exists and is intact.
When we set up CoCo, Surabhi and I wanted to bring people together. We wanted to build conscious communities. We wanted people to take ownership of the world we live in and become change agents. We wanted to support local, sustainable farmers and small businesses. Over the last three years we have been constantly championing this. Over the last ten days, we have been trying our very best to continue to do this. Help all the local vendors who are a part of CoCo and also our community, who have been such huge supporters.
As department store shelves run dry, we want people to know that food is still available, so you do not need to panic. Farmers still have produce, and their lives have not been put on hold. There are small vendors that make wonderful artisan products who still need your support. There are eco-warriors who are still ensuring that we remember to be aware about our impact on the planet. All of them matter, and all of them are community heroes. Now, more than ever, we need to realise how important it will be to support everyone local. Quite simply put, go local. We need to eat local, buy local, travel local and think local.
We have to remember this as we ride this storm and when this ends, and end it will. We need to lift all our local community. We need to ensure we run micro circular economies: choose a small business over a department store, visit a locally owned café instead of a large chain, support your local vegetable markets, identify and promote local artisanal production units, choose a local destination when travel restrictions are lifted. In the bigger picture of the economy, we need to put OUR community first. If we grow, the world grows… together, in circles.
In the world we have woken up to, we are now going to need to follow exactly this. For me, personally, I will look at this as the silver lining around very dark clouds.