Like the early explorers, who went to the far corners of the world to ‘discover’ new geographical features like lakes and rivers, human beings are always striving to up their circumstances – their very human condition.
We are a curious and ambitious lot. That is why we have gone after everything that is not hidden too far off below the earth that we tread on. Because of this compulsive nosiness and greed, we have asbestos.
This despicable thing is out there in the world now, and we must deal with it. Actually we’ve been dealing with this hazard already, several decades.
One of the reasons this thing is hazardous is that it recently got me kicked out of the house, just so it can be gotten rid of.
And moving house is something I’ve always loathed. The problem is that when moving house, the best time to do it is when darkness falls. Yet every time you attempt to move house under the cover of darkness, you will have to deal with several queries along the way; the queries of curious people who want to know if you’re cleared your dues with your landlord. They want to be sure you aren’t fleeing!
The ARC that my landlord hauled in for the asbestos removal was stern and all out for business; no stone would be left unturned in the house and even in the compound before the work could begin, he warned.
You are wondering what ARC might be, right? And what on earth it’s got to do with asbestos. Well, every vocation or line of work has got its own jargon and parlance, and in the world of asbestos, ARC simply stands for Asbestos Removal Contractor.
Apart from the inconvenience to move house before an asbestos removal operation, this thing also causes sickness, although that’s not my major worry. On the contrary, the question on my mind is if, after ignoring several calls from the government all this while, if one would still be entitled to medical insurance if they succumbed to one of the health conditions associated with the material.
Another thing about asbestos is that it’s self-contained; six-in-one. Crysotile, Crocidolite, Amosite, Anthophyllite, Tremolite, and Actinolite are six different sets of naturally occurring minerals. The funny thing is that each of them individually go by the same name.
It’s just that chrysotile and amosite are the most common strains.
All said, the purpose of this article was really to show you the kind of war that I’m engaged in at the moment –an asbestos war.
What this can only mean is that, by the time my roof sheds off its asbestos skin, I will have learnt a thing or two about chemical warfare.
It was to further demonstrate that, in our collective human curiosity and thirst for material prosperity, we often end up acting like the child whose restlessness leads them to feel out a burning fire using their bare hands.
This toddler only gets to learn about the less-desirable aspects of fire after the damage has been done.