Several mornings a week, I walk to the bus stop to see my wife off to work. We enjoy our little walk together, planning the day and noticing which flowers are blooming in the various yards. We're getting to know the neighborhood cats and dogs as well.
On the walk back from the busstop, I've developed the habit of picking up any trash I pass by. Too often, there's a bottle or a can to drop in the recycling; sometimes it's a piece of paper; once a small dead tree, only four feet tall, which I am repurposing into support for my tomatoes.
The very best find was a small shelf that a neighbor had set out on the parking strip for all takers. She was still emptying her garage as I went by, and confirmed that, yes, the shelf was for anyone to re-use. It ended up at the house of my mother-in-law's boyfriend, where it fits in nicely ... much better than being trashed!
This Dawn Patrol for Trash is a small thing, but it is a slight improvement to our neighborhood. I'd urge anyone who walks to the bus to think about fitting this sort of thing into your life. If picking something up on the way to the bus wouldn't work, perhaps you can do it on the way back.
I was inspired to write about this small part of life by this week's Change The World Wednesday Challenge:
This week go for a walk and pick up litter as you go. If you don't find any litter on your walk, then just enjoy being outside and "communing" with nature. By the way, this is a great activity for kids so don't forget to include them.As I re-read the challenge, I am reminded of all the fun I've had just going around my block and talking to everyone I meet. I cannot overstress the many benefits of walking the neighborhood. The people, buildings and streets around us are the closest parts of our world, and making connections with them reap great rewards. I'm not responsible for any kids right now, but it seems to me than if they are raised to ignore the house next door, that can't be a good thing, whereas the simple act of walking every day around the neighborhood can inculcate a valuable habit of knowing what's going on. Try it! and let me know what you think!