Tuesday, March 6, 2012

A Travelin' Trash Gypsy

Dear friends of love, flowers and green-living,

I am on the road with Pick Up America! I arrived in Colorado three days ago - first touring around Colorado Springs: (an eco-city right below an enormous mountain view) smothered with small vintage shops, vegan cafes, bikes lanes, doggies, friendly peeps and hipsters!!! Four hours passed and I bused to Denver: home to the Nuggets and other sport icons, it's the center of bars, energy and night life. (*Yawn, it's not so eco-friendly!*)

Six hours later, I made my way to Grand Junction: an isolated, peaceful, desert terrain area of Colorado. I met up with the crew there and observed as they went dumpster diving behind a bagel shop. They scored a giant bag of onion, garlic and poppy seed bagels. Sweet!

The Pick Up America bus settled miles away from civilization in public land owned by the Bureau of Land Management. We camped out and fought the freezing desert night and woke up to a bright sun, warming weather and hot tea in the mornin'! We then packed our lunch, camel jugs, gloves and trash bags to set off to reach our next destination: Utah's dirt roads and mountainsides.

On our way there, we met a lovely woman Sharon, her sweet horse and Jack Russel Terrier dog. She rides on the trails of the public land (where we camped) and seems so happy and liberated to be on those desert roads. I think it was my first real encounter with a cowgirl!

1st Day of Clean Up and I'm already shocked by the plethora of trash!
I'm still learning how pick up days work but we split up into group, and started off with a couple of miles into between us on the same road. The car with the trash wagon attached would leapfrog and collect the groups and their bags as we cover our daily mileage. We each walked around 6 miles, dragging our bags full of scrap metal, recyclables and litter along the way. This Utah road was home to hundreds of rusted beer cans seeming to have been left from a party as big as Woodstock and most cans even dated back to the sixties. What a shame!

Why we should pick up litter vs. Why we shouldn't litter!
The prairie dogs, desert trails and mountain breeze accompanied us. Seeing tons of trash in such beauty is saddening. Is humanity to blame for being so overbearing, dominating and selfish? When will we consider the billions of other species we share our planet with? When we will think about the plants, the animals -- and all creatures of green-living? How can we focus on a more inclusive lifestyle that promotes simplicity, self-sustaining communities, waste minimization and living in harmony with the environment and the life it provides for?
Well, in P.U.A., our form of action is turning it all around! We work to restore the outdoors, to experience the feeling of stewardship and to be in tune with the green-living that sustains us all! The natural world is crying to be considered, embraced, cared for and nurtured. To break from the societal ways of tearing it apart is SO rewarding!!! We are setting cultural change across America. We need your help too.
I can tell ya, the sun was just filling us up with hugs, energy and good vibes. Our group felt so connected. Jane Matt, Jeff Chen and I, were so comforted in our work as swayed to folk music, cleaned up our earth and formed such a close team!!!

SO to wrap up my thoughts on the first day, I love simple living, environmental stewardship and tackling anything that takes way from humanity and community ----yes, meaning inconsiderate hurtful things like trash!!!

:) :) :)