#Writephoto – Choices

an old, carved stone whose recesses are stuffed with red and black ladybirds.

From the notes of Patricia Hurley – 15 November 2024

The lasts stop on the tour of the new residential development was the food distribution centre. Residents of the development would be able to collect monthly food parcels from here.

“Hi, I’m Jane,” said the perky, young social worker who was facilitating a delivery of basic foodstuffs. “The food centre is where residence will collect their monthly food rations. These will comprise of basics like tea, coffee, sugar, dried milk, canned goods, cereals, biscuits and soya products. All the small items people need to make their lives comfortable and pleasant. The residence will also collect their monthly coupons for the canteen which will serve all lunches and dinners.”

“I noticed there are no shopping facilities in the development,” said Jack, a community psychologist. “Where do the residents purchase additional food if they want it?”

“They can’t,” said Jane. “Only light meal preparation is allowed in the apartments and residents may not bring food from external sources into the development. Food is to be prepared, cooked and clean up centrally in the most energy and resource efficient way. All food provided to residence will be artificially created and will contain all the healthy nutrients needed for a healthy diet.  There will be no junk foods and all meals will be free of harmful ingredients. The world government does not support self-inflicted health problems such as obesity, and is taking steps to limit people’s choices in that regard.”

“And what happens if they break the rules?” enquired Jack.

“They will be transported to a prison development in one of the endangered areas.”

“Endangered areas?”

“Oh, those places that are being most impacted by global warming and are high risk for natural disasters.”

On the bus back to central London, Elizabeth and I discussed our visit. “I think the world government has done a fairly good job with this programme. They seem to have thought of every need the residents will have from healthcare to schooling, as well as entertainment,” Elizabeth said. “There are some strict controls being put in place, but maybe that is not a bad thing. Too much rope has allowed people to hang themselves in the recent past so some enforced discipline may be appropriate.”

“Yes, I think you are right,” I said, but my lips were playing service to the words. Elizabeth’s early comment about the lack of genetic engineering laboratories, Jane’s comments about the food regulations and the impersonal persona of the entire development disturbed me. Squashing the unemployed and unemployable people of the world into a housing estate, even if it was a state-of-the-art one, just didn’t seem like the right thing to be doing.” It’s so white and unappealing. That place would make the most resilient of people depressed. People’s human rights are also under threat.

If you missed it and are interested, you can read a bit more about the development here: https://robertawrites235681907.wordpress.com/2019/06/15/socs-social/

This post was written for Sue Vincent’s weekly write photo prompt. I chose choices for my post. You can join in here: https://scvincent.com/2019/06/13/thursday-photo-prompt-choices-writephoto-2/

16 thoughts on “#Writephoto – Choices

  1. This is perfect for the theme of choices. What are we willing to trade for “security” or “convenience”? It still amazes me how much privacy people willingly give up for such a small return. They don’t even pretend to complain about it. but once the line is crossed, how do you go back? (K)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, there are housing estates but they are not as small and efficient as these are. They also weren’t built with the intention of housing an unemployable population but rather an unemployed one. There is a difference in respect of the long term nature of the project.

      Liked by 1 person

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