As we set out for our typical walk only one thing was different, we brought gloves and a trash bag this time. For a while we noticed all the garbage in the water and around our neighborhood which is the home to many duck families, turtles, nutria rats and more! We made a plan to clean it up and now we were actually on a mission to do it. On our first official clean up we encountered a lot of unexpected things.


As we were just getting started near some bushes, a lady driving by in a car slowed down to thank us for picking up the trash. I was really touched by her. I did not go into this thinking i was going to be thanked for a fairly simple and decent act. I just wanted to do something good for the animals, environment, and life surrounding. When we made it to the ditch I wasn’t surprised to find so much hidden trash hidden in the tuffs of grass but what was surprising was the turtle we uncovered. He had been there dead and decaying for a while. His shell and a few bones were left inside. It was a cool find but who knows, the trash could have caused his death.

Probably the most dangerous thing we found out by the water was a fishing line with a hook still on it. That could have done a lot of damage to the wildlife that live out there. The grossest thing we came across was a dirty diaper someone had thrown out near the retention. We had been thanked again by another person passing by and we had the interest of many onlookers around us. When we got home we went through our garbage and recycled about 45% of it.

The next time you are walking and see trash on the ground don’t be afraid to pick it up and throw it away. You will feel a deep sense of accomplishment and pride in your action to make a difference.