In honor of Earth Day this year, Eric and I joined in a local clean-up effort. We were handed big plastic yellow bags and cloth gloves and sent to a local lake front to see what we could find. At first we thought the area hardly seemed in need of a clean up, but little by little we began to fill up our bags. An old newspaper, discarded chip and candy wrappers, soda cans, and water bottles tossed to the side of the trail.
As we ventured further off the path we began to find more carelessly thrown garbage and the bags got heavier and heavier. An old hat, some styrofoam containers, metal scraps, plastic bags, even some 'unmentionables'. As I lugged around that garbage bag I began to spot smaller pieces of trash that I hadn't noticed before. Bottle caps, plastic hair clips, straws and napkins. Our bags were filling up fast.
Although our bags were full, we had a hard time heading back to the community center. Seeing how much better the area looked after only a couple of hours made us want to stay out there all day. But we knew there were other volunteers and we had to get back.
So on this Earth Day, I want to challenge you all to take a look around. If you see a piece of garbage, pick it up. If we all pitch in, think of what a difference we can make.