I grew up on a farm nestled in the Sneeuberg mountains of the Great Karoo – a semi-desert region of South Africa. I presently live in Cape Town but intend to return to the land as soon as circumstances allow it. When I do, I will be a 5th generation farmer. The Kingwill ancestors farmed in Somerset, England before bravely boarding ship as a family of 12 for a four-month voyage across the sea to South Africa in the 1830’s.
My (great X 4) grandmother lost two children to an illness that broke out on the boat on the voyage and her husband a month later, but she persevered.
The Karoo is a place where climate change is felt very easily. It is a highly sensitive environment. Every hardy leaf and thorn shows in its make up how intricately it has adapted. Every storm and every drought, every magnificent sunset, bright starry sky and every sharp shadow on a burning hot day are testimony to how clean, clear and extreme this semi desert region is to changes in the earth’s atmosphere. When storms and droughts come, they are so extreme and powerful that those who live there have not option but to bow down in respect and reverence to the power of nature.
In the city, it is easy to lose touch. To get wrapped up in our comfort zones and forget… until something big happens.
I strongly believe that it is time for all of us to wake up and feel the earth’s warnings and messages. We have to learn to respect her and stop taking her for granted. My work is to create awareness of this on all levels in every way I can.
- “Dont FRACK with my Karoo” (aseeqah.wordpress.com)
- Is SA’s water too precious to frack with? (dailymaverick.co.za)
- South Africa shale pits Shell against sheep farmers (fuelfix.com)