I grew up overseas, first as an “air force brat” and then as an (embassy) attache’s daughter. We lived in Europe as well as Latin America and after college I moved to New Zealand. So you can see why I am attracted to other cultures and languages. These places were beautiful natural settings and perhaps hence my love of nature and inclination for conservation.
Decades ago, I my father told me “they will never conquer the jungle.” He was a pilot and this was after a fruitless search and rescue mission for a plane that went down somewhere in the tropical forests between Costa Rica and Panama. I wish they had found the plane, but I also wish he had been wrong about de-forestation.
I remember flying over emerald forests in the 1960’ and 70’s that looked like endless crumpled velvet. Although half of Costa Rica’s existing forest cover today is under the protection of national parks or biological reserves, 80% of their rainforest was already lost over 15 years ago. The primary cause of deforestation was cattle ranching