Saturday, December 19, 2009

The Price of Paradise

After doing battle with roaches, ants, and African snails—the downside of staying at a relative’s house—I came across a 2004 blog post that could have been written yesterday:
When people ask (in a nice way) why I don't move back to Hawaii, I cite familiar reasons: Honolulu's traffic, the sometimes oppressive humidity, and the lack of job opportunities. But that's the left brain talking. What I don't miss at all are the things that go squish.

As a child I was very careful to watch where I was stepping, especially at night. African snails made a distinctive wet crunch, and their dark slime was hard to clean from the ridges of one's slippers.
Hawaii’s humidity, warmth, and 2,000-mile distance from the nearest continent made it conducive to rapid evolution. Here there are hundreds of unique species, many of them endangered. Fecundity begat diversity, which is the benefit of living in a tropical environment where squishy things crawl underfoot.

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