Sunday, July 5, 2009

Thinking about Trash

While in Hawaii, as a tourist staying in a hotel, we didn't have our own dishes and we had to eat out a lot. Our drinking water was from plastic bottles. (Maybe I should pack the brita next time) Food we got from ABC for our road trip around the island was in plastic and styrofoam packaging. I felt this enormous guilt being on such a beautiful island using so much disposable stuff. Oahu is an island with limited land. Where do they put all the trash from the tourists? This is what I was seriously thinking about while I was there. While I was in the water, I thought about the sunscreen we use, all the beach-goers use, and we all go in the ocean and the parabens, oxybenzone and titanium dioxide all wash off into the water and the fishies ingest it. I got sad. What are we supposed to do? I tried to use less and be conscious, but it just made me sad and feel defeated. I told my friend Cara about my feelings of guilt using so much plastic, then she told me about the Great Pacific Garbage Patch. It's all our plastic trash and flotsam that spans from California to Hawaii and is as big as Texas. Some parts are visible, and some parts are photodegraded, but the molecules are still plastic. The plankton eat it, then the jellyfish eat that, and then fish eat the jellyfish and then we eat the fish. I googled it immediately when I got back to the hotel and got even more sad. I don't mean for you guys to be bummed out, but this is a bummer. Can't we go back to glass bottles that we took back to the grocery store for redemption? I remember those glass bottles when I was a young elementary school kid. Then all of a sudden in high school, water was sold in plastic bottles. Madonna toted her plastic bottle of Evian. It was all the rage. Now it's all in the ocean. Why did we fall for that marketing? Drinking water is healthy, but we were fine carrying our thermos'. Easier is not always better. *Ugh* Sigh*

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