Many mornings ago, I realise that there is a mountain spring flowing out of my tap.
When I turned on the tap, like I did this morning, the water was extremely cold and refreshing.
I imagine that it had sat in the tanks above our flat for a whole night, chilled by the fall in temperature. Cooled by the morning dew. And the sun had not yet touched it. I haven’t been to the Swiss Alps or the mountain springs. But I can imagine that that is how a spring should have felt. Cold and refreshing to the touch. Uplifting. Even though it flows out of a man-made device and even though the water is artificially brought to us, it still has the touch of Nature.
We live in a country called Singapore. It’s a small island when you compare it to the countries that surround us – Malaysia and Indonesia being the closest. We have been continually reminded by our government that we do not have any natural resources. No oil, huge swathes of land to grow plantations or anything else. We only have our people. This has been burnt into our national language for over 40 years.
I think the national language (I don’t know what else to call it) obfuscates what is really there in front of us. It covers up a lot of things. And alienates us from the nature of things. We do have the mountain spring in our taps.
It is true, isn’t it. Where does the water in our reservoirs come from? From the rain that falls from clouds too heavy to stay up. From clouds that wandered into our little island as they visit countries all over world. Water from the mountain springs that evaporated. From the Swiss Alps. Drops from the Himalayas. From Lake Baikal.
Every time I turn on the tap, I just have to feel the coldness of the water and I am reminded of the springs, glacier floes and mountain ranges. And I am grateful for it.