Put on the park lights for an hour


Doctors and medical professionals have all agreed and recommended at least one hour of moderate exercise to maintain a healthy body.

Recent studies have also shown a direct link between physical exercise and mental health. In fact, to quote Karl Marx, “the only antidote to mental suffering is physical pain.”

Like most people, I find the best time to get in some exercise is in the morning period. Before dawn when the mind is silent and the hustle and bustle of the day is yet to begin.

My venue of antidote is the Eco Park in St Helena. For those who may be unfamiliar, it is a well-kept, luscious green space with paved walking path, bathroom facilities and lighting.

The problem starts with the lights not being on at that hour. We who frequent the park on early mornings have been told by the park authorities that TTEC only allows for lighting on evenings until 10 pm and not on mornings. The same rule applies to the Eddie Hart Savannah and all other parks.

With our country experiencing the highest murder rate in our history, with record-high home invasions and robberies, why can’t we put on the lights from 4.45 am to 5.45 am in our parks? If costing is the problem, let’s switch off the lights one hour earlier in the evening to compensate.

The majority of people using the parks at that hour on mornings are the ones most in need of the mental break and physical workout. We have an obesity crisis, lifestyle diseases are clogging our health facilities and we spend billions every year on healthcare. If this one hour can save one person from surgery, it would have saved the taxpayers $180,000 in healthcare for that one person.

What is the true cost of one hour? Can someone shed some light on this please.