World Run II / Reports
The map shows the position of which the pictures for the day are taken (if any). The start and finish markers are placed at the first and last valid registered position. This is not nessesary the actual start and finish position, if GSM or GPS signals was not available.
Distance today: 45.0 km (Accumulated: 28555.0 km)
Elapsed time: 04:04:00
Start 10:00am., 22c, very humid, overcast and light wind, at km-stone "710" in Chepen village on hwy. 1N. Finish 14:56pm., 28c, clear sky and strong wind, at km-stone "755" on hwy. 1N.
...Between God's City & Apocalypse Restaurant !
Yesterday I to my suprise ran through God's City, "Ciudad de Dios" and a bit into todays stage I passed by "Restaurant Apocalipsis". So I guess I at the moment find myself between those two extremes ;-)
Running in this part of South America is pretty much the same: between heavenly experienses and disasterous happenings. And, I guess, the title of this report is also perhaps a fitting label of our present society back home in the Western World.
... What I mean exactly by that - I hope you find in the reports from the last few days (which is online now) as far as the South American experienses are concearned. A clu' would be that its a mixture of fantastic open landscapes, a relaxed and often content lifestyle and perhaps most of all a freedom which I doubt we find anywhere in the somewhat more cramped spaces of Europe, USA & many parts of Asia. Yet at the same time a 'hell' of corrupted bureaucracy, from the highest office to the daily encounters w. police and other authorities which do what they can (and can't ;-) to make this half-paradise a half-hell' as well.
But ofcourse its also a hint to the fragile balance I find myself in, while running through the 3. world: From heavenly experienses in quiet small villages, tenting in wide-open nature and learning about unspoiled historical gems'. But what follows quite often when you step into that wonderfull nature or sit down at a local restaurant: you get a taste of what tropical nature has in store for the long-term visitor; a 'smorgas-board' of various tropical diseases with a side dish of the occational amoebic diarea to make your nights feverish' and your days filled with collecting impressions of various 'vomitoriums' along the running route !
Dont be mistaken: It can be wonderfull. But it can certainly also test your endurence or persistence - if you want to see all of this part of the world. And not just a few weeks of months of selected tourist sights.
But what struck me most, when jogging along and thinking about this ambiguous territory between Heavenly City' and Apocalypse Restaurant' - was how well it actually fit our present society in the western world:
To have a wealth and perhaps even more precise, a level of comfort & conveniences, which I think is beyond the comprehension of generations before us (and many citizens of the 3.world).
Yet at the same time, to encounter that apparently so little has been made out of it. That these same things; comfort, convenience and the luxury of beeing entertained most of our awake hours of the day - has left us with an apparent lack of meaning in life and time or occation, to dwell on the deeper meaning of things beyond consuming more, and faster.
Its ofcourse a thing which can only at best be a statement, and not really have any scientific underlining, but for what its worth I meet more people with a firm purpose in life, a strong foundation in their values, than in 'our' world. And I meet far more people who take themselves time to do the process it requires to challenge and think about the profound questions which life gives us. It appears as if the rapid growth of 'dishes' in our heavenly overstocked Restaurant of Choices' which our society has become, has left us with only time to 'Eat' and no time to Think !
Its ofcourse not to be taken literally; we do have a historical unprecedented amount of spare time, free time, holidays, retirement packages etc. However, that doesnt seem to mean that we have got more time to well on the deep questions which life has to ask us, and always has asked us no matter which society or historical age. It appears that we've become rich on the outside, but at the same time robbed of philosophy beyond 'eat some more' and to it quickly !
Its not to say that I in any way stand outside of this. And not necessarily neighter, to critizise it. But its Surprising, that we with the modern oppotunities and means of creating a 'heavenly city', instead seem to have build ourselves a giant Apocalypse Restaurant where we most of all are concearned about how to Eat even more and Weight even less, both at the same time ;-)
- Its to me a symptom of wanting to live, without really Living !
... To want to eat, but not have the effects of it. To want an exiting life, but to insure oneself from any dangerous happenings' of life. To desire an increasing number of new things - but wanting to be free of the pollution which comes with producing it. To want 50 channels of news; but to only hear the exiting stories. And not what really goes on out there, everyday, in the rest of the world.
And that last thing; is what the world run's are about. To try to break through the 'tv-reality' of quickly zapping from one entertainment to the next, and from one choice or 'meal' to the next. And instead try to be present and experiense the earth, as it is when the tv has been switched off and the restaurant is closed :-)
PS: I promise that the next reports will be back to normal. But sometimes the political scientist background and most of all the interest for philosophy requires me to share a little of those throughts too. I hope you can bear with it ;-)