At 8.30pm on the 24th March 2018 Bowmore went dark. Now, some readers may be thinking this is nothing unusual, Islay is prone to the odd powercut, but this time the outage was different. It was intentional.
This particular, hour long, blackout was in support of WWF's Earth Hour and my first attempt at organising a community event. After approaching A&B Council we were able to switch off every streetlight in Bowmore, joining millions around the world in this global grassroots movement.
After following Earth Hour for many years, I felt compelled to do something more. Take my efforts beyond my own home. Most importantly, I felt the need to raise awareness. Remind people of how fragile nature can be, but also how easy it is to make change happen.
The biggest change for Islay's Earth Hour was seen in the sky. I find it interesting how streetlights are designed to light up the darkness, keep us safe, but really they only hide the nights natural beauty and teach us to fear the dark.
As the late Stephen Hawking said;
"Remember to look up at the stars and not down at your feet. Try to make sense of what you see and wonder about what makes the universe exist. Be curious. And however difficult life may seen, there is always something you can do and succeed at. It matters that you don't just give up."
We can all learn and grow if we simply listen, look and feel our beautiful Earth. Not just for Earth Hour but each and everyday.