I am in Lisbon.
At moments, I feel good about myself. I came here by bus. I share a beautiful apartment with ten beautiful people. I buy my food mostly in an organic market. I use public transport. I help out in a dog shelter.
At moments, I feel bad about myself. I don’t know the land I am on. I don’t know if the houseplant needs water or not. My carbon footprint is higher than if I’d just stayed home. On various occasions, I buy food wrapped in an extraordinarily amount of plastic. I am right next to the ocean. My plastic bag is a fish’s mistaken lunch. I consume the city and I don’t offer anything in return.
At moments, I feel entitled to be here. I have a right to enjoy myself. No one can expect me to renounce myself. I shouldn’t be so hard on myself. It is not about perfection. Sustainability is about the good life. Live it.
At moments, I see how these are words of comfort. They sound good. They sound reassuring. Yet, they deny the meta-crises I find myself in.
At moments, I wonder. What if the good life does not entail that I am entitled to be in Lisbon?