Friday, August 16, 2013

Brought to you by the letters "E" and "A"....

After a five week journey to North Alabama helping family through surgeries and sneaking in a few visits along the way, I'm back at the beach.  There's an odd disconnect one experiences after being gone for so long.  In order to find myself again there has been lots of sleeping and simply "being," a couple of early evening Toddies on the Beach with the hubby, and first beach walk.

We've had an abundance of rainfall the past few days.  Along with the rain drops came lightning and thunder, north winds and heavy seas.  After the heat of early August I welcomed this change with open arms...and bare feet for my first serious walk.  My goal was the green rocks of Fort Fisher.  However, the universe had something completely different in mind for me.


Stepping onto the wet sand off our walkway the first thing I noticed were lines of beach flotsam and jetsam deposited by the sea.  It was just past high tide, and these markers were high spots of deposits.  There, amid the bits of shells, seaweed and bits of grasses were cigarette butts.  Leaning down to pick up the first one I spotted 5 more.  This continued for about a hundred yards south.

I never made it to the green rocks. After about 20 minutes my collecting bag was nearly full.  Back aching, hip complaining I turned back to do a sweep on the way back and collected even more.  North winds blowing my hair out of my eyes I could see more trash, even watching the waves deposit more as I walked.  It was staggering, the amount of garbage.  A personal, worst for Kure Beach.  More tourists on a smoking beach = more cigarette butts.  

Kure Beach Trash Pickup: August 15, 2013;  1.4 pounds of trash
1 hour over a few hundred yards.  Mid-afternoon, after storms and rainfall at high tide with heavy seas. 

10 Children's toys
Over 50 bits and pieces of paper and plastic
2 tubes of chapstick
8 plastic cigarillo tips
1 complete empty bottle of water
1 Landshark beer bottle cap
1 plastic spoon
The letters "E" and "A" from something
1 quarter
22 bottle caps
448 cigarette butts

That last one bears repeating:  448 CIGARETTE BUTTS

This is plain nasty.  I'm going to buy medical gloves for these beach pickups it's becoming so gross.  This time I did receive pay for my efforts - one quarter. 

I leave you with a pretty photograph of how a beach should look, sans trash:

...isn't this better?


Gaelyn said...

Litter just makes me want to puke. I cannot believe anybody likes to see it, so why is it there. Thank you for picking up this mess. But please do protect yourself.

bunnits said...

I commend your efforts. We recently took our new kayaks on a local creek and were dismayed at the amount of trash we saw. We've decided to try some clean up expeditions.

Shannon said...

You could do a photo book of your photos of the trash, like yours from today's post. Or a blog just about that? It makes me think of a blog I saw once that was completely about things the author found in library books - random, interesting things. Hmmm. I guess I find your trash random and interesting.

Jan said...

That's always a shame to see this stuff when I'm on the beach. You did a great service by spending your time helping to clean it up. Unfortunately it's just a small dent...but every bit helps. Maybe now that the 'peak' of summer visitors is dying down there will be less butts lying about...although it's overwhelming to think of the zillions of them deeper in the sand and down under the sea :(

Naquillity said...

your efforts to clean the beach have helped countless sea critters i'm sure as well as make it a prettier place to walk. that photo in the beginning is powerful. i think Shannon has a strong point using your photos in a book or special blog dedicated to this subject. showing others what a mess they're leaving behind might inspire them to throw it away properly. simply love your beach photo after the cleaning. makes me want to visit. hope all is well. have a great day~ said...

How did I miss this post? It is an awesome display of the travesty of not thinking, or of thinking "well, one butt won;t make a difference" Well maybe one butt doesn;t but 400+ makes a huge difference. What a blessing you are to have picked up all that garbage. I think a dedicated blog or even a book could open a lot of people's eyes -- and hearts -- to the need for clean beaches.


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