The City at Night

Sorry for the blurry camera quality, my phone does not have an adequate camera.

Valparaiso is like the Amazon rainforest, just with fewer trees, more people, and less rain. Also, Valparaiso is smellier, and has more stray dogs, and fewer animals, and barely any ants that I’ve seen; so not really like the jungle landscape that I so wanted to see.

Instead of a rich canvas of life, and a sprawling forest utopia, I see an angry city. Instead of the place that sparked the curiosity of the man who “invented” nature, I am in a place where the dockworkers don’t get paid enough. The thing about forests and jungles is that everything is interconnected, from the loudest cawing bird to the stealthiest jaguar Everything has a purpose, and every individual organism is important, vital, to the function of the whole.

The jungle never sleeps, as the animals of the day rest, nocturnal predators emerge from their dens and burrows. The night is crawling with activity. The cycle of interdependency does not care about rudimentary things like the position of the sun. It exists only to sustain itself and crawl forward inch by inch.

At points in the night, it seems like all the animals of the jungle awake, and reveal their opinion about a matter. This is similar to Valparaiso, wherein the middle of the night, the stray dogs unite to unanimously voice their disapproval. The city landscape of Valparaiso comes alive, like that of a jungle, the noise comes from all around — just noise, meaningless, like a stormy ocean, a wave of noise crashes over you, encompasses you, tosses you up, and then down. There is just noise, from above you, below you, around you. And then it’s over.

Like a rainforest, Valparaiso almost breathes, it’s connected, just with pigeons and dogs, instead of more interesting creatures. Like a rainforest, Valparaiso almost breathes, the feeling of being alive is in everything.

Ian

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