Feb Office Beach Clean Up: Final Results!
February 7, 2020
It is 72 hours since the 2nd Office Beach Clean Up. Usually I will tell families if the fever is gone after 72 hours, than no need to come back. The virus has subsided and it is over. Perhaps when the contagion is good https://drplasticpicker.com/behaviors-are-contagious-i-am-trying-to-spread-a-good-contagion/, the euphoria and goodwill can last well after the 72 hour period. Perhaps it can last a lifetime.
I have stayed pretty healthy this season, I think mostly because I have been washing my hands well before and after patients. I have been avoiding the plastic gloves unless there is actual soiled material. And then our family has been eating more fruits and vegatables, and avoiding processed foods and take-out. The ocean plastic picking allows me to do a quick bit of cardio, and then I reach the beach and just walk and pick up bits and pieces and then I jog home. I have made very silly trash art and laughed a lot https://drplasticpicker.com/chirp-chirp-vs-instagram-trash-art-delights-and-brings-awareness-and-does-real-work/. I think that has cleared my sinuses quite a bit. And that is it. I am happy and healthy. No headaches https://drplasticpicker.com/tension-headaches-drplasticpicker-cures-myself/.
I think this is a message that we all knew, but somehow we forgot. 72 hours ago was a beautiful morning. I honestly was not sure anyone would show up again. My two pediatrician friends who were supposed to come, did not. One came the wrong day and was at IB Pier on Saturday (the group met Sunday). I was cleaning at my usual rocky beach when she called me lost with her dogs. We had a good laugh over the phone, and she told me about her love for the beach and her two epic beach cleanings that she has done on Easter Island. I talked to her on the phone as I was watching the beautiful beach I clean, and the waves washing upon the dark rounded rocks. I could imagine her on Eastern Island doing the beach cleaning, she well remembers. We said goodbye, and I was smiling when I picked up the next few plastic pieces. My other doctor friend did not come as well, but he has been busy with his art studio. And Dr. Dear Friend my clinic buddy was doing an overnight at the hospital, so was post-call and could not come.
But RN Plastic Picker came with her two children again. And my own children and Mr. Plastic Picker came. And two of the families I care for came. When I saw them come, I was so happy. I have seen the children who range from 2 to 18 countless times in clinic, but seeing them walk toward our makeshift beach clean up base was like seeing a Marbled Godwit or Whimbrel when I am cleaning the more populated beaches. They are supposed to be there, these patients – these children. They are supposed to be on the beach and outside the clinic walls and outside of their electronic medical records, but I have never seen them outside before. And I saw them outside 72 hours ago, and I realized they are real.
The 15 of us had a quiet morning. Groups scattered along the quiet beach, and Mr. Plastic Picker watched our belongings under the pergola that shades the picnic benches. Our simple breakfast of muffins, pineapple orange juice, clementines and apples was spread on the same vinyl tablecloth I’ve used now for all the beach cleanings. There were no single-use plastic cups, instead we had just washed the durable plastic IKEA cups we have had for the children for the last decade. They work fine. The entire outing cost less than $10, and was just our human time and effort which everyone gave freely.
And we picked up a good amount of trash and salvagables. I filled out the I Love A Clean San Diego reporting card afterwards, and I know that it is not 100% accurate – but the two teenagers had actually been taking the accounting seriously and had filled it out. I think they are more aware of the real danger that ocean plastic pollution poses to us. And the 2nd results of the beach cleaning have been submitted and I Love A Clean San Diego works with the Ocean Conservancy. We are all part of a network of concerned citizens working for a common cause.
So those are the results of our 2nd Office Beach Cleaning. We removed a good amount of ocean-bound plastic from this local beach. We made many brief and real connections among adults and children. We have plans now for the next cleaning, and other families want to come. It will likely be an entirely different group and myself and RN Plastic Picker. And one of our wonderful mothers who came with her family is a poet and has offered to donate her time to do a poetry workshop for the young drplasticpicker volunteers. I have talked to our physician friend who was not able to show up, and he has offered his beautiful studio space as a site. Grand dreams now are forming in our collective minds for another type of beautiful pollution-reduction focused event that involves creativity, words and again real humans connected together. Its 730AM and I have a full day of clinic ahead, and the work-world calls. Thank you for taking these small moments to come along with us on our journey. I will carry the memories of the beautiful morning close to my heart.