...because you thought Sweden was Switzerland!

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Animals take over Chernobyl

Sorry I haven't been around for a while. For the past weeks, there just hasn't been too much to write about in my new routine life. I jog sometimes before work, I go to work, go home in the afternoon. Sometimes I have class, and often I read school stuff even on the weekends. I tell myself that I should find a place for blogging in my new routine and write about everyday stuff. After all, there are nice events in the workaday week too – I just need to sit down and write about them.

One thing that found itself in my new routine though, is TV-viewing. I don't like aimless channel-surfing, but I do watch some shows on a more or less regular basis now. Gordon Ramsay shows are a favorite – even his Kitchen Nightmares is oddly inspiring – and I also like to watch the Swedish home-renovation programs on a regular basis. Weekly, I also look forward to watching Robinson and Wipeout. Robinson is an ala-Survivor Swedish reality show that, for this year at least, is set in uninhabited islands in Palawan. Wipeout is a Scandinavian francise of an American show with the same name, where participants go through an obstacle course reminiscent of that in Takeshi's Castle.

From time to time too, there are great documentaries on TV, one of them I want to write about now. I saw it on TV the other day and we thought it was so good that we watched it again on YouTube yesterday. It's a 2008 Dutch documentary whose English title is Chernobyl: Life in the Dead Zone.

The show isn't about the pros and cons of nuclear energy as much as it is an exclamation of wonder that wildlife can thrive where humans can't. Since humans have evacuated the radioactive village, nature has taken over, the forest had reclaimed the land, and the area had seen an increase in biodiversity that baffle even scientists. Elk, bear and wolves live peacefully without threat of human hunting – because all of the animals are radioactive. The narrator describes it to be a bittersweet tale: the animals are undisturbed in their sanctuary but will remain radioactive for centuries.

At the heart of the documentary – and the reason why I love it so much – is a tale of a domestic cat family who had been abandoned by their owners long ago but survive in the wild, in abandoned houses. It's a really dramatic tale worth your 40 minutes. And maybe it will keep you busy until the next time I blog.

Click on the links to see Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4 and Part 5 of the show. Full screen recommended (click on the square icon on the bottom-right of the movie screen).

Till next time, I hope this film keeps you glued to your seats!


Blogger Petri said...

We are remarcably good at habitat destruction. Although pollution and climate change are huge factors, the simple presence of us noisy humans and all our houses, roads and industries is perhaps the greatest threath to biodiversity.

The problem with the radioactive solution, is to determine when enough is enough. The french nuke trials in the pacific obviosly scare off most folks, but the process will be hard to justify for the Amazon or the mangrove forests of the world...

9:43 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

will try to watch this. i rarely see any good documentaries in animal planet.

1:52 PM

Anonymous lea said...

prolly won't watch it, just looking at the cat photos make me want to cry!

try looking at these photos, very depressing:
and this story:

nuclear power is depressing.... kainis how pro-nukes camps over here keep harping about it.......

2:51 PM

Blogger Ahoy! said...

WATCH IT, LEA! The cat story will still leave you with a smile, trust me! That goes for you too Cheryl!

7:42 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

joy! amazing! i just finished watching it. it's true what they say, evolution could go on without humans. animals and plants thrived when people left them alone. while it's sad that animals are ingesting large amounts of radioactive food, and the cumulative effect might show up in the future, i'm glad for now that they found a haven.

7:10 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Watched this documentary on Animal Planet and it tugged my heartstrings! Absolutely love it!

7:17 AM


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