Aqua or turquoise is a favourite colour. It always makes me think of the ocean lapping the beaches of Rio de Janeiro, the blue-green light of a natural beauty that infiltrates the soul, surpassing all the sadness, confusion and fear in a big city or a small heart.
In the local supermarket yesterday I saw a small, pretty woman with a white-blond ponytail and just for a moment I thought it was a long-ago colleague. Then, remembering the years that have passed since I saw P, the twenty years since we travelled together to Rio for the 1992 Earth Summit, I realised this woman was too young, the resemblance a phantom outgrowth of my own mind.
I’d been hearing reports this week from RIO+20 - sad and angry reports like this one, mostly, since no one, these days, believes that such events and their bland statements will make a difference – and thinking, oh my, is it really twenty years? Did we believe these statements then? I think we still wanted and tried to. It’s all so mixed up with memories and thoughts about the passage of time and erosion of will in my own life. So very lucky to have travelled from the middle of England to Copacabana. Such great hopes and opportunities, for some of us, so quickly dashed. And yet that blue, once seen, will always colour the imagination.