Category Archives: Shoe

Cocktail in the sea

This spring is proving particularly fickle. Gorgeous, calm days with turquoise waters are quickly replaced by thunder and hail storms, with tempestuous waves to boot. The heavy rains form streams that transports reddish soil downhill from nearby fields directly into the sea – creating a strange looking cocktail as the meet. These fields are used for crops and I regularly see the famers spraying them with pesticides – needless to say these toxins are also being carried into my beloved bay.

And of course there’s plenty of plastic still added to the mix. Recently I stubbled across a disturbing video on the consequences of this problem created by Olio. It claims that 1 in 4 fish contains micro-plastics. This is nothing short of a disaster. But looking over the history of Happy Beach findings – it’s sadly not surprising.

On this gloomy note the collection includes:
* 5 plastic bags
* 3 cigarette ends
* 1 shoe (blue Micky Mouse)
* 1 vodka bottle – complete
* 1 Ouzo bottle 12 – top only

12

* Assorted plastic bits
* 1 rusty spray can
* 1 plastic plate
* 1 yogurt tub
* 2 syringes
* 1 medical bottle
* 3 fishing floats
* 1 pen – blue
* 1 straw
* bottle tops
* 5 plastic water bottles
* 2 lighters
* 1 knife handle – blue & white
* 5 water bottles

Blue Days

Poetry of the Sea

Summer is here and a cooling dip in the sea beckons!

Rarely can one enjoy a swim without bumping into bits of plastic bags and styrofoam. Not only does this make the experience unpleasant, but it becomes a very tangible reminder of the conditions suffered by the local marine life.

Strange yet wonderful things are happening to this life on Happybeach.
Over the past two weeks nest upon nest of Sea Turtle eggs have appeared in the sand. Subsequently the Cyprus Wildlife Society came by to document the nests.

sea turtle nest

They could report that last year the entire bay housed 43 nests – this year they already registered 160 nests. And the sea turtles have been laying one month earlier due to the mild winter. This is an intense increase in numbers and I can’t help wondering how much human interference plays a role. Are we experiencing the consequences of global warming?

aphrodite

Thankfully people all over the world are combating both global warming and ocean pollution. The wonderful 2 minute beach clean movement based in Cornwall managed to organise a national beach cleaning day all over the UK yesterday. As a tribute to this great event I was joined by sound artist Thomas Burø and we did an extra big cleanup, and created a Trash Poem for good measure.

Collection included:
* sheet of styrofoam
* 1 ghost net
* 3 glass bottles (1 broken)
* 1 rucksack
* 1 sheet of paracetamol
* 8 plastic bottles
* 2 shoes
* 1 water pistol
* one doll’s torso
* 6 plastic cups
* plastic bits
* 1 ice cream spoon
* 1 toy rake
* bottle tops
* wine cork
* string
* bubble wrap
* buckshot
* oil canister
* an onion
* an orange
* fishing line
* fishing hook

X.jpg

Buckshot season is here…

Winter has gently arrived in Cyprus. Yet with average sea temperatures of 21 degrees swimming is still possible, and there’s nothing quite like starting the day with a refreshing splash!

Winter also means the start of hunting season – which is a big deal on the island. Around 45.000 permits are issued allowing locals to traipse across woodlands and fields shooting at birds, rabbits and other small creatures on Wednesdays and Sundays. Their leftovers can be found on paths, roads and even the beach. My collections count a far higher number of empty buckshot shells over the winter months..

buckshot

Collection includes:
* 1 white queen (chess)
* 1 paint bucket
* 10 l. orange canister
* 10 cigarette ends
* 2 juice cartons
* 2 lighters
* 2 buckshot shells
* assorted plastic

rubbish

* A square piece of cardboard wrapped in plastic
* 1 toy soldier
* 1 paint roller
* 1 child’s shoe
* 8 plastic bottles
* 3 aluminium cans
* Silver foil
* Fishing line
* 1 So Easy phone card
* Styrofoam
* 7 bottle tops
* 3 plastic plates
* 2 plastic bags

evening sky

The fishermen’s plastic dinner

The news this summer has been filled with disturbing reports stemming from this region, only a couple of days ago 140 refugees stranded at the Akrotiri airbase, so of course looking out at the Mediterranean every morning evokes conflicted thoughts – also about the collected debris, some of which have Syrian labels.

Summer is slipping into Autumn on Happy Beach, the rains have arrived, and fishermen are reappearing on the rocks. Plastic washing up on the shore is still manageable, but it saddens me to consistently discover waste from the fishermen scatted carelessly about the area.
Obviously they have no clue that their remains go back in the sea, become eaten by the fish, and ultimately end up on their own dinner plates.

Bon appetit!
fishermens trash

Collection of the day includes:
6 cigaret butts
1 juice carton
Assorted plastic
3 pieces of rope
1 small ghost net
1 canister + plastic fishing line
2 can
8 bottle tops
2 paper bags
1 pillow

pillow

7 bits of plastic bags
10 plastic bottles
2 glass bottles
2 bits of broken glass
1 broken comb
1 plastic blob
1 plastic tub
1 plastic Frappe cup
Styrofoam
1 flip flop

flipflop

2 plastic bags
4 shoes (size child to male adult)
1 razor head
1 sun hat (child size)
1 green straw
2 milk bottles (plastic)
2 clothes pegs
1 baby bottle toy

bottle

Suddenly this summer…

After longer spell abroad it’s a joy to return to a hot, summery Happy Beach. The sea is turbulent and, as always, endlessly attempting to discard our rubbish back on the shore. One totally heartwarming homecoming event is; that the turtle nests are hatching!! We had a visit from the Cyprus Wildlife Society today, who register nests, and dig out the hatched eggs to see the progress.

turtle eggs

This is such exciting news, and as it turns out, the nests seem to be doing well. We marked off the nests when we found them 6 weeks ago with sticks to try to protect them from playful visitors and the occasional car driving on the beach. Now the baby turtle are making their epic journey into the sea. Here are some tiny turtle tracks…

turtle tracks

Collection of the day:

* 13 plastic bottles
* 2 flip-flops (not a pair)
* 1 broken sun-bed

sun bed

* 1 glass bottle
* 2 bottle tops
* 1 beer can
* Assorted plastic
* 2 plastic espresso cups
* 8 straws
* 1 aubergine
* 1 phone cradle (red plastic)

phone home

doubles and despairs

The summer has set in on Happy Beach and the sea is beautiful and offers a refreshing dip during the sweltering days. The calm waves do unfortunately still bring in lost items, though is smaller quantities than before.I’ve noticed is that often items turn up on the shore in pairs – sometime in eerie ways.

silk cuts

Not that the things arrive right next to each other – but they do pop up on the same beach clean. Odd things like 2 Nutella lids, oil drums and diving masques. Apparently on Happy Beach things happen in pairs.

nutella

An arrival yesterday morning was more than a normal beach clean could handle – and one that doesn’t need repeating! A dead sea turtle washed up on Happy Beach in the afternoon. She was old and didn’t appear to have any damages caused by humans or trash but what to do with the remains? We are talking about a 40kg sea creature. This area is remote and has no coast guards or sea port authorities. No one takes care of the beaches.

turtle

A kind neighbour offered to help remove her but even a burial seemed unmanageable – bury her on whose ground? Finally Oliver and I went for a burial at sea. With great effort, not eased by the lunchtime heat and Eddie and Molly’s extreme curiosity, we managed to carry the turtle to the end of the beach and put her back in the sea that hopefully will take her where she belongs.

Collection of the week:
* 1 rubber glove
* 2 hypodermic needles
* 1 plastic flower
* 2 silk cut packets
* 1 broken fishing rod
* 6 beer bottle tops
* 5 cigaret butts
* 8 plastic cups
* 2.7kg of stinking plastic bags 😦
* 11 plastic bottles
* 2 pens
* 2 biro lids
* 1 pair of flip flops

flip-flops

* Assorted plastic
* 3 clothes pegs
* 1 smartie lid
* 2 Lacta Lov’ it chocolate wrappers
* 2 Nutella lids
* 1 canister for Rust Remover (empty)
* 2 Styrofoam box lids
* 10m of strange plastic tape (at least)
* 1 pair of jogging pants (junior size)

lid 2foam lid

the travel plans of plastic & a surprise..

The Happy Beach household has had many discussions about how waste travels in the sea. It seems specific debris items arrive in clusters – a wave of medical bottles turn up for a while, then there seems to be nothing but endless bits of light plastic on the shore, followed by a period of heavier things such as shoes. This cut up water bottle was found in very separate parts of the beach indicating that the journeys were slightly different.

and its mate

Maybe there are patterns connected with the weight of the item in question, currents, the season and wave velocity. Some brilliant people have been looking into the travel plans of plastic through the sea. The Moby Duck project is a study of 28.800 bathtub ducks that were lost at sea and subsequently followed by environmentalists to see the movement of plastics. The Adrift project is a great initiative, where you can track how plastic travels in your area.

propeller

The collection of the week includes:
* 1 big plastic bottle, cut in two
* 1 packet of cigarettes (opened)
* 1 panty liner
* 1 biro lid
* As always: Lots of assorted pieces of plastic
* Paper
* Broken tub
* Plastic bags
* 10 straws
* 1 knife handle
* Small pieces of rope
* 4 plastic bottles
* 1 cap screen
* 4 shoes
* 2 soles
* 1 heel
* 3 hypodermic needles
* 1 plastic wing
* 4 plastic coffee cups
* 232 bottle tops
* A toothbrush
* 1 piece of painted, blue wood
* The top half of plastic canister
* A ghost net trapped in the rocks

And a piece of good news: A contribution was made to the Happy Beach collection point on my birthday. A visitor found a sturdy length of rope and delivered it. Thank you!

gift