My club was going to the beach to clean it up. I hated to see all of the garbage on the seashore and when the club proposed going to the beach and picking up all of the stuff, I was all for it.
We grabbed large black plastic bags. I started to put bottles, plates and refuse into the bag. I kept at it for a while. Every so often, I would glance at the wide expanse of ocean. The seemingly infinite blue whispered to me her timeless joy.
I had always felt a special connection to the ocean. That beautiful, swirling mess that no one could control made me feel so safe when I would jump in to swim. She was like another Mother to me. I spent so much time by her side.
“Hi, Helen. I thought that you left the school,” said the Ecology teacher and the Club’s faculty advisor.
“Yes, but I didn’t leave the Earth,” I replied. He smiled and took my bag. He gave me another one.
I had left High School to go to work. I still went to Night School to get my High School Diploma. I found time to go to the beach as often as I could. I was happy, but directionless, floating in the ocean.
That day with the Club made me feel wonderful. I felt that I could be a positive influence on the world even though I had to go about it in a different way.
The Ocean feeds us and cools us. We dump our junk into her and constantly take her product away. She is not just some resource to be exploited. Anyone who has stood by her side in the early morning can feel a special life to her. She was around before we were and she will be around long after we are gone.
This past summer, my husband went to the beach and noticed how badly the ocean smelled. It wasn’t salt. It was putrid. The waves were gone and it just sloshed around.
Something is happening. I want to learn more about it to protect her. This last weekend, all of these Spring Breakers came into town to party. There were incidents with the police because the people were supposedly not adhering to the curfew.
We are not getting our money’s worth.said a party-goer at Miami Beach, March 20, 2021
The partier came from out of town and thought of Miami Beach as the place to come party once a year when classes break. I was just sad because of the Ocean. She was right next to her. The student was standing on her skirt, the sand. She just wanted something else from the Ocean, a backdrop for her revelry.
I am not judging the student because it is time to celebrate. I just wonder if she ever looked at Mother Ocean with that same kind of reverence that used to fill me. She probably did. I can hope that she goes back and starts her own Ecology Club.