Seriously Pissed About TRASH!!!

Who throws this CRAP out the window!  What are they, idiots?  Obviously, they’ve never been on a beach vacation where the beaches aren’t groomed every morning!  Otherwise they’d KNOW that trash is killing our world!   In two miles, we picked up this entire bag of tin cans — two miles….

Getting ready for our upcoming Alaska bucket list adventure, we’ve been walking longer & longer distances.  Today we arrived at the marina, our 2 mile turn-around, and David was PISSED!  He went into the office & requested a trash bag.  The next two miles back, we picked up ONLY tin cans and ended up with an oversize trash bag half full.  It would have been fuller, except we squashed every can before we put it in the bag.  🙁

The bag of tin cans we picked up in 2 miles today.

The bag of tin cans we picked up in 2 miles today.

Somewhere along the line, the U.S. public seems to have forgotten about the “Keep America Beautiful” campaign as well as the “Don’t be a Litterbug” campaign. I clearly remember being shocked at the litter along the streets of Isla Mujeres, off the coast of Cancun, Mexico, and our first international cruising stop.   Frequently I hear travelers complain about how “dirty” someplace is, but not everyone in the world is lucky enough to have trash picked up regularly and disposed of … that is if we bother to put it in a trash container.

I also remember being in Panama City, Panama in 2009 when they were having a major campaign against litter and trash — other countries may be behind when it comes to keeping their environment clean, but at least some of them seem to care.

And being SHOCKED at pristine remote paradises such as Glover’s Reef Belize, Josh Cay Bay Islands and the San Blas Islands at the trash accumulated on the beaches.  What would these people throwing trash out the windows of their cars think it their next hard earned beach vacation looked like this:

San Blas Islands Beach Trash

San Blas Islands Beach Trash

Or this:

Glovers Atoll Belize Beach Trash

Glovers Atoll Belize Beach Trash

But now it appears that in the U.S. lots of folks have forgotten what our country would look like if everyone just threw their trash wherever they wanted.    Maybe I’m strange, but I do NOT want to walk along my middle of nowhere country road and see dozens of pop and beer cans … and that’s not EVEN counting the plastic bottles, they’re even worse.  Maybe we’ll devote tomorrow’s walk to picking up plastic.

Maybe if everyone gets together and makes this an issue, our country would become cleaner again?

Please share if you agree.




  1. Lille di Lorenzo says:

    Hi Jan,

    Thanks for this latest post. Beach trash is a subject that we desperately need to address. I’m not sure if you’ve ever seen any of the Midway series of films done be Chris Jordan but I think they’re well worth watching. I’ve linked two of the films to this email. Very sad !

    So glad you’re helping to spread the word !


  2. So here’s a little history lesson. The Keep America Beautiful campaign I remember from my childhood was developed by the bottling companies. Why? Because legislatures were threatening to pass deposit laws that would make soda companies, etc. take bottles and cans back for reuse or recycling. That would cut into profits. So they started the media campaign.

    I’m with you on picking up trash. I always bring trash bags in my kayak. And I’m all for education too.

    But the problem is bigger than both those things. As long as we allow companies to produce packaging that’s cheaper to throw out, we’ll have a major trash problem.

    Europe has passed many laws making manufacturers responsible for getting rid of the end results of their products and it’s making a difference. Unfortunately, that smacks of socialism to many Americans and doesn’t look likely any time soon.

  3. Some of the most disturbing images I’ve ever seen concerning trash in our oceans which ends up on our beaches are the ones where turtles, dolphins and other marine life have had plastic bags, string, buckets and even old rope wrapped around their fins and noses. If it doesn’t come from the sea, don’t put dispose of it there. Sadly, it’s often yachties who are the worst offenders. I once commented on a YouTube clip of a couple celebrating their equator crossing by popping a wine cork into the ocean. I got absolutely shredded by the person who uploaded. They had no idea or even cared where the cork ended up. Who knows Jan, you may have even picked it up for them.

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