On a bright and sunny Phoenix morning, a dozen volunteers from our yacht club gathered to help clear the trash from a section of Carefree Highway the club adopted 10 years ago.
As we picked up some 26 bags of litter and other road debris, my immediate thought was “people suck,” but that feeling was overwhelmed by my gratitude for my fellow volunteers for giving up their Saturday to help give back to our community and bring some beauty back into our lives.
Our adopted section of highway near Lake Pleasant (one of our two sailing venues) is well traveled by cars, trucks, cars and trucks towing boats to the lake, RVs, and LOTs of motorcycles. So we donned our yellow safety vests, gloves, hats, and grabbed our pickers and bags and set out. We even got a few honks of appreciation, thumbs up and waves from passing motorists.
Fortunately, we started early enough in the day that it wasn’t too hot, but the ground is rough and the work grueling.
After about two hours, we had filled all the bags we had and successfully completed a pretty good job cleaning up that mile-long section of highway. Despite the warnings, there was no meth-cooking debris on this section of road (apparently, it’s an issue), nor did we see any snakes (thank goodness). We are all pretty pleased with our accomplishment.
We celebrated with beers and burgers at a nearby saloon. It really was a joy to spend time with people who care about our environment, some of whom aren’t really active in the club but came out for this one event.
There’s a whole world out there waiting to be explored. Let’s keep it beautiful!
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