Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Day 37 - July 21

Life Guard Station 26, Ocean Park, Santa Monica CA
trash collected for 20 minutes
estimated pounds collected today - 7.1
estimated pounds collected to date - 212.1
After 13 minutes I collected this much trash. Summertime is tough to be out here because of the increase of trash to collect. I can feel overwhelmed by seeing it all. 
People smoke for many reasons. Being an ex-smoker myself, I feel like I may have an insight or two on this. I liked to smoke a cigarette to take a moment and relax. I often felt like this was the only time I took deep breaths during my day. This may sound like a strange motivation to non-smokers, but smokers will understand. A cigarette was a way to relax, a reward. 

I became dependent on smoking for many other factors as well, but one was really to have a break. The beach offers this to people. I see many, many people enjoying the sun, sand, and waves. This is a positive dependence that could be also thought of as a gift you get from the beach. You relax, take a deep breath for the first time in days, all of this is a reward for carrying out the beach chair, applying sunscreen and getting sand in your hair. I wonder if people thought more about the benefits they receive from a day at the beach, would they leave their trash behind so often? Would they want to fight to preserve the beauty of this place for people to come and experience the same benefits that they have experienced themselves? And if so, how do you convince them? I think about questions like these all the time. Especially when I am out there picking up trash.
The daily water bottle collection.
There was an incredible court ruling this week in San Diego. The city wanted to scare away a group of Harbor Seals that had made a new home at a beach called Children's Pool in La Jolla. At the last minute the courts decided to leave them in peace and not spend 688,000$ to blast their barking dog recordings. People are strange, we are not the only animals that like the beach, and most of us don't call it home like these Harbor Seals and seagulls. For the full story, click here
This is my first week back to collecting and posting in awhile. I discovered an interdependence that I knew I had, but hadn't felt the full implications of. My husband Garen was away for two weeks. I was home in our life with our injured dog, and a scrapped up elbow as the result of falling off of a horse. I was also getting ready for a wedding back east for my cousin, and a family visit that would go along with that. All in all, I really found that I felt miserable without his love, sanity and support. I had a difficult time doing more than the task at hand. I missed this project, and it feels good to get back to it. I found out that much like the beach, I feel relaxed and rejuvenated from our relationship. Another dependence that I plan on taking care of for years to come.