Rather than sit in the cramped office space at H&H Motors for the estimated hour it would take my car to be repaired, I decided to walk to Main Street Margaretville, which is under a mile away and offers many more possibilities in the way of things to do—and also doesn’t smell like axel grease. I crossed Route 28, which fortunately had rather light traffic that August morning, and I immediately came across a discarded aluminum can, so naturally, I picked it up. A few steps later, here was another piece of trash, and looking ahead, I could see some more, so I popped into the nearest establishment, the Country Cutting Gallery, to ask for a bag. The hairdresser was in the midst of sudsing up a client’s head, but she gladly donated a plastic shopping bag and said with a puzzled air that she’d seen me pick up a piece of trash. Sadly, that is rather unusual behavior, isn’t it? I thanked her for the bag and left the women to their beauty ritual. I had another kind of beautifying ritual in mind because I had decided to pick up all the trash I found between that point and the entrance to Margaretville. Humans thrive when we feel a sense of purpose. My previous goal of simply “looking around Margaretville” was too vague. Now I felt focused and happy that my idle time would be spent on a meaningful task.: assembling the archaeological record of this patch of road. Villages in the Catskills each have a distinct character, but that particular stretch of Route 28 is about as close to a clone town as you get, and the garbage was disappointingly generic, too. My [...]
July 1st - July 31st online at https://plasticfree.ecochallenge.org/ We all hate plastic and what it does to our oceans and landfills, but it’s hard to break the habit. The Plastic Free EcoChallenge is a month-long effort to shift away from our single-use plastic dependency, offering each other encouragement and support along the way. Go to the link above, choose Team Catskills (or another team of your choice), then select one or more actions to take during the month of July. It can be a daily action (if you're trying to instill a new habit) or a one-time challenge, such as visiting a waste management facility or planting a garden. This is an opportunity to align your actions with your values, to take one or more actions that you've been meaning to take, to share what you've discovered with others, and to be as plastic-free as possible for 31 days. Join us!