I’ve been away for the entire Summer – seems like forever – and return to a garden turned wilderness (with unwanted inhabitants included), a broken water pump and a very trashy Happy Beach. But the sea is beautiful as ever…
Apparently the turtles have been scarce this year, only 3 – 4 nests compared to 20+ last Summer. Am not sure how this works but I’m pretty certain it has nothing to do with Christina Aguilera or Justin Bieber. Our local luxury VIP hotel was accused of damaging turtle nests when building a beachside stage to host a concert with the pop idols. It caused quite a fuss involving politicians and withdrawn permits, and finally the gig was cancelled. With my small knowledge of the turtles’ habits and breeding grounds the whole thing smells a bit fishy to me.
Anyway, back to the task at hand. Dogs and humans are thrilled to be roaming Happy Beach again and managed to have her looking good in no time. Bruno even found a tennis ball!
Happy Beach collection includes:
28 soda cans
18 plastic bottles
1 superman cap
3 glow sticks
2 fishing floats
1 glass jar (closed)
Assorted bits of fabric
2 plastic forks
1 girl’s slipper
Bits of plastic bag (loads)
1 toy plastic rake (white)
Broken styrofoam lid
A leg of a plastic chair
3 clothes pegs
1 tin can
3 plastic cups
2 shoe soles
1 tin of flammable material (partly used)
1 tennis ball (found by Bruno)
1 x-mas bauble with no coating
1 plastic finger tip
1 piece of lego
Summer is refusing to loosen her hot and very dry grip of Happybeach this year. October is seeing high temperatures and still not a single drop of rain. Pleasant yet disturbing at the same time. Gardens are thirsty and every little gust of wind kicks up clouds of dust. Still it’s great to be back after my travels and exploring the beach with Molly!
Island life carries on as usual. The trees are filling with avocado, olives, lemon, pomegranate, figs, pomelo and bananas – soon ready for picking. And October means the start of hunting season, so sounds of gunshots and howling dogs are to become a fixture of Wednesday and Sunday afternoons.
Happybeach has changed radically over the summer. In addition to the endless piles of rubbish (no big surprise there) the continuous heavy waves have totally restructured the beachside by shifting the sands and bringing out the rocky surface below.
These photos show the same stretch of beach with a year between.
And of course the collecting must go on. It’s discouraging to discover that local tourists are adding to the pollution problem much more than visitors from abroad. One would think that they care for their island and the image it projects when the beaches are covered in trash. But the litter left on the seaside after barbecues and picnics is appalling. Everything from towels to plastic food containers to countless cans and bottles get discarded without a second thought.
We’ve just returned after a 10 day trip abroad to find Happy Beach in very bad shape. The last couple of days storms and heavy winds have been inciting fierce waves to toss up alarming amounts of plastic and waste onto her shores.
This soft, gentle beach has been converted into an angry graveyard for debris, plastic, pipes, bottle tops and more plastic. Junk climbing all the way up the grassy slopes even reaching the collection point.
Today was merely reconnaissance with a heavy heart…. and tomorrow: the work begins – again. What a homecoming!