Thursday, January 13, 2011

Litter picking is an All Season Sport - The Last piece nearly did me in-true story. South Burlington, Vermont

     A single piece of litter doesn’t seem like a lot, does it? Well it was for me one very, very cold day in January. You know that kind of day that has gusty winds, low temperature and it is almost too cold to snow. Each step I took made sounds like breaking glass. Each breath hurt so much I did not want to exhale only to have to inhale again. Dress for the weather my mother always told me. I was dressed for the weather, enough so that I looked like the Michelin Man after he ate the Pillsbury dough character or the giant Stay Puft Marshmallow Man from Ghostbusters fame. I mean I had so many layers of clothes on that a bathroom call was going to require fifteen minutes of prep time.

     Empty grocery bag in mitten covered hand I waddled down the sidewalk. Wanting to get a clean start on the New Year, my journey began. I walked slowly, strolling, in no hurry even incapable of moving beyond ambling-see dressed for weather above. Once you accept feeling like a frozen piece of cow in a meat locker, being outdoors viewing nature is calming. You see and think things previously unexposed.

     I thought of Elizabeth Edwards’s dying message. "The days of our lives, for all of us, are numbered," "We know that. And, yes, there are certainly times when we aren't able to muster as much strength and patience as we would like. It's called being human." But I have found that in the simple act of living with hope, and in the daily effort to have a positive impact in the world, the days I do have are made all the more meaningful and precious. And for that I am grateful." Today, right now is as precious as any day we have.

     Finally I had nearly filled the bag with trash only needing one more piece to call it mission accomplished. The last piece, (it) being frozen in a snow bank required a bit of tugging. So much so that I fell over the snow bank tumbled down an embankment landing face down in powdery snow. Getting my well-dressed bumble-self upright took no small effort. I had to laugh at myself, given how I had gone to such great efforts to be “well dressed”, only to nearly succumb to my bulky wardrobe.

     Picking up a piece (of litter/trash) every day doesn’t seem like much, does it?

     But it is, in every month of the year.

     Believe it or not, every piece helps; Helps prevent harm to birds, fish and other wildlife, helps prevent water pollution, and helps remove the “yuck” factor from our streets…

…and helps keep the bumble from falling down!

 Happy New Year!    

Please leave a comment, tell me what you think. What are your ideas to help eradicate litter, and influence attitudes toward one of intolerance for litter? Song, You Tube clip, photos, organize litter pick up- what creative innovative ideas will you share with us?

Other “A bit of humor” postings:
      Ø   Snowstorm buries VT: