‘Lights, camera, action’ are three words I have become used to in my professional career. If my stint at Charminar is anything to go by, then ‘Arrested ‘is going to be a new phrase I will become accustomed to as an activist with Greenpeace India.
My first Greenpeace police detention or arrest came on Monday afternoon when I joined a team of activists who had organised a banner-drop to mark the opening of a major United Nations conference on biodiversity, on one of Hyderabad’s most iconic land marks, the Charminar. The demand: Indian government, hosts of the UN conference, needs to stop their wanton destruction of the forests with their environmentally flawed mad dash for coal. Continue reading
We spent this morning in a round table discussion in the shade. It was a meeting with breakfast as a side note. We covered nearly everything from risk awareness and assessment to planning the world record run and accounting for the most evasive and difficult variable in this trip: the wind. Test runs on the boats and an errand to the event site were in order early. Alex, Matt and Tripp drove with Phil to the event site, while I went with the Greenpeace crew on their two boats: the 20ft long Patrick Grech and the Billy Greene. Each boat is named in memoriam of fallen Greenpeace activists. We did test maneuvers with both boats and shook the grip of winter off the Greenpeace crew. Alex, Matt, and Tripp paddled out on Stand up Paddleboards and carried their new kites to shore Tahitian style.
My favorite moment out on the boats came when Matt kited out, and unveiled for the first time the Greenpeace branded kites. The hundreds of hours of labor that Amanda and Rachel spent drawing sharks, whales and turtles on the kites were reflected in the awesome decals. Their eyes lit up when Matt got close and they could see their work fluttering and flying in the light breeze. Rescue procedures for picking up a disabled or injured kiter exposed the Greenpeace crew to handling the kites for the first time. It was fun to see this adept group look bewildered for a moment. This effort has been culminating for months and finally starting after months of planning is fantastic. Alex has been quiet and smiley, I can tell he’s proud to watch his child take its first steps on the ground. Pray for wind.
Guest blogger for Greenpeace
Kiteboarding for Marine Reserves Tour