Wandering around cities, we always get the feeling of how people live, how they occupy the space, how they perceive the environment around them and how they interact with it.
Moreover, just by walking and observing, we get the impression of what truly matters to them and what they are looking for, id est, what they consume and how they would like their products to be placed in the market (street view, shop windows or carts, easily visible to scan and choose from – paying on the go, or taking the time to sit down, sip a cup of coffee and talk over happenings with friends or strangers met in front of the shop).
I am always fond of the 17 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, and how we wish to see the world that we dream of, the space we wish to live in and the type of things we wish to be surrounded by.
As a lover of arts and culture, I always dream of being surrounded by music and shows, musicals and theaters, shiny advertisements showcasing the latest cultural movement, trend, cinema or big actors playing in a new performance. I always feel the beat of the city through images, visuals, sounds, big billboards and ads that portray the desires of the people who live in it.
Being mesmerized by what surrounds us, a process of osmosis slowly entrenches us and we start identifying ourselves with the environment, the habits and the time/schedule of the city living. We start liking what we see, starting to develop a friendly relationship with people, objects, places, and we – affectionately speaking – get into the groove because we have grown aware of the spaces and places.
This is called Human Flexibility and Adaptability. As we have grown accustomed to wearing masks – still sad to think you cannot see the full smile of people, but I still hope that the moment will be a transitory one in the history of humankind – people are part of nature, and, as nature shapes us, we become like it. We interact with it, and we understand what it wants and needs. Once we have understood it, we can establish a two-ways communication, where we can propose new ideas, changes and improvements – if necessary – and taking a look at the holistic perspective and how people would react to a change in the natural flow of things.
The relationship with nature, our civic responsibility to keep the environment that surrounds us clean is a duty, to make sure everyone is happy and well, healthy and safe. The aesthetics can later come – to beautify and color the world we are living in – but firstly we need to build a strong, friendly and trustworthy relationship with the environment. Exactly, as if it was a friend of ours.
As a parallelism, I’d like to use the example of the sand. I am lucky to live close by the sea, in a city called Cox’s Bazar (also known by the name of Panowa – which translates literally into yellow flower) , in the Southeast of Bangladesh, known also for the longest natural unbroken sea beach in the world (155 km, 96 miles) . Sometimes it has noisy surroundings – tom tom and rickshaws honking on the streets- sometimes people stop you and ask you innocent questions while you are walking – and maybe you are up in your clouds and thinking of your next ideas for a work project – but all in all, it is the place I chose to be my present home, until the next home destination.
As the sand and the sea, the sand continuously adjusting to the waves of the sea, thus changing its shape and sand grains color and movement in space, I believe that humans are also sand grains, molding to what surrounds them. The essence (the soul of the human remains, id est, its passion and preferences) but then, it transforms into something else, something new, something stronger, and yet flexible and incorruptible (you can change the shape, but you cannot change the essence of a soul).
A new soul, sweeter and nicer, yet tougher and able to face any new sailing and adventures. Calmer as the sea, stronger as the sea grains, moving together to form a new creature.
Ciao from Cox’s Bazar, the land of News & Sea (& stars) Movements!