THE PALM TREE STOOD TALL AND STRONG.........LIKE THE DREAM BEACH RESORT PROJECT
The Majestic Palm was strong and erect. Thrusting upwards from a coconut birth through several pregnancies to become one of many in its family to line this beach paradise, owned by a Dreamer, a potential Developer. Along came a major hurricane. Strong winds of resistance walloped this statuesque nature reserve.
Monstrous waves eroding the very foundations of the dream. But spiralling winds fail to rip away the fronds from their sinewy anchors
atop this column of strength. Some of the roots of this 'project' have been eroded and the tree is forced into 'lean' times, held on by strands of root-strength on one side only.
This palm tree could be anywhere where dreamers dream to develop.
With strong roots fed by soothing rain and bathed in replenishing sun, it now provides more shade to the path for bare feet to reach the beach umbrella. Forgotten is the hurricane winds that ripped out half of its roots and the common sense that re-focused the palm fronds to balance horizontally again. Nature's magic.
Waiting in the wings of this idyllic theatre is a drought that will starve the roots of their cashflow and the project, already tilting toward catastrophe, sitting precariously over the umbrella, providing still the shade for a dreamer's luxuriant picnic surrounded by his risk-averse consultants.
The tree falling could or would crush the umbrella, ruin a good picnic but miraculously would leave space for another tree and another dream to grow in its' space.
The lesson from this ridiculous analogy is that the dreamer must use the rain, the wind, the waves and the sun as much as fodder for the project as it is also danger and threat, delay and opportunity.
Here are my Top Ten Lessons learned from a leaning palm.
- Erect and Leaning are equally as impressive.
- Nature always wins a few innings.
- Umbrellas are temporary. Trees are less temporary.
- Planning a project on any beach should anticipate natural (and man-made) disaster.
- What's around the roots is as important as what's on top.
- What's on top must be flexible.
- What's on top must have strong roots as well.
- Plan for an overnight 45-90 degree directional change.
- Don't underwrite a picnic under a leaning tree without the fodder.
- People still pay for coconuts but not for dreams.
The science of resort development is not really funny until, as a scientist, one sees the science as a part of nature. And nature as we all know is hilariously funny and on occasion horrifically cruel.............like resort development.