The wonderful headline stated:  Indian man single-handedly plants hundreds of acres of forest.  In the northern Indian province of Assam, there’s a forest named after one man — not a politician, or a historical hero, but a guy who lives there today.  It’s named after him because he planted most of its 1,360 acres.

Jadav Payeng, known as Molai, has been living in the area for more than 30 years, planting trees.  Once this area was desolate, now it’s a jungle that is home to tigers, rhinoceroses and elephants,  Payeng said, “I saw flood-stranded snakes die from heat on the barren sandbar, with no trees to protect them. I alerted the forest department and asked them if they could grow trees there.  They said nothing would grow there.

He started planting trees and transported red ants from his village area to help improve the area’s soil quality. Mr. Payeng has made it his life’s work to build a forest where none existed before.    You gotta love it.

Then there is the late Wangari Maathai, the charismatic Nobel Peace Prize from Kenya who established the Green Belt Movement, which spread from Kenya and across Africa and restored indigenous forests while assisting rural women by paying them to plant trees in their villages.  I am moved by her writing at the end of her book “Unbowed,” in the chapter called: Canopy of Hope.  “As women and men continue this work of clothing this naked Earth, we are in the company of many others throughout the world who care deeply for this blue planet.  Those of us who witness the degraded state of the environment and the suffering that comes with it cannot afford to be complacent.  We continue to be restless.  We owe it to the present and future generations of all species to rise up and walk!

You gotta love it! ~

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