Oceans and Wetlands — Certainty and Ambiguity

Moanalua Bay with Koko Head in the distance

Good Morning, God!

This is my view of Moanalua Bay while stopped at a red light. Up until maybe two or three days ago, I had four categories for Hawaii Kai: 1) Ocean 2) Moanalua Bay 3) Marina 4) Land.

But, my Godson, Shane, was telling me just a few days ago that Hawaii Kai is basically “wetlands.”  Wetlands?  “A wetland is an area of land whose soil is saturated with water either permanently or seasonally.” Hmm. Yes, I knew that Hawaii Kai used to be wetlands. It had never occurred to me, God, that we humans hadn’t just transformed Hawaii Kai into Dry Land and Marina.

a new sign on Hawaii Kai Drive

In fact, Waikiki used to be wetlands, too. We humans apparently love separating the land from the water. Funny, I thought we were successful. But, my Godson is very smart and sounded quite certain that we were still wetlands.

Then, yesterday, while jogging I saw this sign. Apparently, this is to designate an “active” wetland that I jog by several times a week.

Hmmm. I might not think that much about it except for rereading Being Wrong by Kathryn Schulz. I was in the part about how we humans much prefer Certainty to Uncertainty. We almost insist on Certainty in our leaders. Apparently being wrong is acceptable — but being uncertain about what is right — is not.

I can sense that wetlands have too high a degree of uncertainty for most of us. Is it land? Or is it water? The wetlands should decide! And stick to it! I’m mostly joking, God. Still, finding a designated wetlands in my neighborhood was a trifle unsettling. It makes me “uncertain” about the quality of the soil my home is resting on. I, too, like certainty.

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Posted in clear waterways, complexity, web of life
One comment on “Oceans and Wetlands — Certainty and Ambiguity
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