I’m big in China

by Guest Blogger

October 24, 2007

The following posting is from Hayden who is at our Forest Defenders Camp. Learn more about the camp and threats to Indonesian forests.

So today is a pretty relaxed day, other than having about 100 people at camp today for day 4 of the fire fighting training (and on a side note I got totally shafted and was on dish duty yesterday and had to help wash what seemed like hundreds of dishes.)

The highlight so far today is that I just sat down for an interview with, the fifth largest web site in the world (and the largest in China.)  I was a bit circumspect as to why she wanted to interview me, of all people (as opposed to Hapsoro, our Indonesian forest campaigner, or Rob Taylor, the overall logistics coordinator) and Yifang, our Chinese forest campaigner didn’t help at all when she supposed that she wanted to interview me because I’m "an attractive and charming American" – the internationals in the room thought that a bit of an oxymoron. Regardless of the reason I wasn’t about to turn down an opportunity to tell 120 million people about why this campaign is important, and about how China and the U.S. are partners in leading the world in creating pressures that lead to deforestation – and how all of that links to global warming.  I definitely hit all the important points, as to what she chooses to write, that remains to be seen.  I wish I could read Chinese (or Mandarin, I suppose.)

I definitely got the feeling that some of my more assertive comments won’t make it to print.  Being such a large website their content is watched closely by the Chinese government, and any criticism of the government must be balanced with compliments.  Needless to say, I didn’t have too many good comments about China’s role in forest destruction, other than that they are beginning to do a decent job of protecting it’s own forests.  And of course I linked the U.S. into that equation, as China is many times just the middleman for manufacturing of products that end up in American homes and buildings.

On a completely unrelated note, half the camp was awoken last night by a blood curdling scream.  We all got up to look for the source for the scream, but to no avail.  I think it was just someone having a vivid and vibrant nightmare, not a too atypical side effect of taking Chloroquine, an anti-malarial.  It took me awhile to get back to sleep after that. Especially with the chainsaw snoring resonating from the women’s sleeping quarters.

That’s all I have for today.  We’re busy unloading materials for an upcoming activity that we’re working towards.  I’ll write more about that next week.


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