ferry; hermes/manannanWednesday brought a trip up to Powell River so I could work on Thursday and make it back home today, in time for the long weekend (ish). This meant traveling right after school ended on Wednesday and driving like limbo to get to the ferry on time.

I drove safely and arrived fairly early, even after leaving late. (Witches are like Timelords when we put our minds to it.) The ferry from Little River to Westview is situated right next to a beach that you have access to once you’ve parked your car in the appropriate lane. This is awesome for dog walkers and people who just appreciate nature – and yes, there are baggies provided for your canine’s waste so everyone can continue to enjoy the beach.

As I had about an hour to kill before I had to be back in my car to board the ferry, I decided to walk on the beach. I went to the water’s edge, took off my sandals, and let the ocean cleanse me.

I greet you, Lord Manannan
I reaffirm my devotion to you
I pledge myself to your care.

It was a spontaneous prayer, so this is not a completely accurate transcription. The last line is meant to be defined both ways: I pledge to take care of the ocean and the beach, and I pledge myself to Him and His care of me.

Then I got to work backing up my words. There was litter on the beach – granted, not as much as I usually see on beaches, but even one piece of litter is too many. I picked up all the pieces I saw and that I was able to – there was a bit that I couldn’t get, as it was rope tangled up with net and driftwood buried in the sand. Too much for this crippled Witch. I’m hoping that some able-bodied nature-lover will pick up where I left off.

While the cleansing of my feet in the cold, cold waters of His Saltiness was a beautiful way to celebrate my Wednesday devotion to Him, I find myself becoming angry with humanity once again.

Every time I go to the beach it is covered in litter. More so than any other natural place I visit.

I know why this is. The beach is seen as family happy fun time place, and so people take their kids, let them run around, and then go home – without picking up after themselves. The beach is not the domain of nature lovers only; it’s also the domain of people who don’t give a shit. Because the beach is a fun, cheap vacation.

This isn’t the same for a forest hike. If you’re hiking in the forest for vacation, then you’re already going to be inclined to love nature and respect it. I’m not saying I never see litter in the forest, because I do – but it’s far less frequent than when I see it at the beach.

This includes lakeside beaches too, by the way.

Seems wherever there’s water, there are people making a mess. Also seems there are too few pagans and nature lovers to pick up the pieces.

I’m not exactly sure what the solution is, here, but I do know one thing: education starts at home. I was brought up by my parents to respect the land around me, and I’ve never stopped. I’ll bring my children up the same way.

I don’t know what else I can do. Aside from writing angry blog posts that probably preach to the coven.

6 replies on “Beach Woes”

    1. That particular beach isn’t always that bad, honestly. It’s one of the better taken-care-of ones out there; this may be because not many people go there for actual beach vacation times and usually visit while waiting for the ferry.

      There’s a beach in Powell River, however, that is *constantly* covered in really gross litter during the summertime. Winter’s better, but it’s still messy. And I’ve found the same at a lot of other beaches. Really disheartening.

  1. I “liked” this post, as a way of showing my support and thanking you for posting this…. not because I like that people are apathetic and destroying our beautiful planet.

  2. My hubby & I have had similar, sad reactions visiting the water when we were still living on the coast. (We just moved from Massachusetts to Tennessee). We always tried to clean up after others while we were at the beach, but especially when our schedule was particularly nocturnal and/or we were particularly struggling, pain-wise, we were often left feeling awfully dissatisfied with what we were able to do while there versus what was needed and what we *wanted* to do. It was particularly frustrating to see in Salem of all places, where there are so many vocal and visible pagans who profess to be earth worshipers.

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