Fred had recently become interested in biological history. Reading about how early humans spent their days foraging for food and observing their environments fascinated him. He loved that they could know when a drought or a thunderstorm was coming by picking up on nature’s clues. How have human beings evolved intellectually so much, yet have become so disconnected from nature?, he thought. Our oceans are polluted, our food comes from who-knows-where, and most people spend their time inside their homes or their cars. How did this happen to us? Fred decided he needed to make some serious changes in his life.
He decided that he wanted to be a hunter-gatherer like his ancestors once were- well maybe just a gatherer, considering that he had been vegan for 10 years. He began to research all that he could find about growing his own food. He would spend hours every day in the library researching. “Could I really live without ever going to a grocery store again?,” he thought. He went to the nearest hardware store to buy supplies: seeds, soil, shovels, and more. He had no backyard, so he decided to make-do with his front yard. He began digging and planting, constantly referencing the books. His ancestors did not have books, but he figured it would be better to research than trial-by-error.
Over a few weeks, he saw vegetables which were ready to be harvested. He picked some tomatoes off the bush. He could not believe how sweet they were and that he had grown them from just a few seeds. He was inspired. In fact, every time he went out into his garden he was inspired.
After three months he had more food than he could eat! He had dozens of vegetables which needed to be harvested everyday. Neighbors would line up for their share of vegetables. Soon, it was a community garden. His neighbors would bring back the organic waste left by the vegetables and help Fred compost them. Soon enough, they had fertilizer for the soil.
There was soon demand for him to help his neighbors set up their own gardens. The seeds he planted grew not only food, but a community. Neighbors would share their goods and make meals together. This was of course different than what fascinated Fred about his ancestors, but nevertheless, this modern-day community of foragers made Fred feel more connected to humanity.
- Do you think that humans have become very disconnected from nature? Explain.
- Would you be interested in planting vegetables? Why or why not?