Like Shells On A Beach

     When I go walking on a beach I usually don’t get very far.  I don’t get much exercise either because I spend most of my time bending over to pick up interesting looking shells.  By interesting I mean pretty much any shell  since each one is as unique as a snowflake and looks interesting to me.  It’s very similar to when I walk along the Gunflint Trail this time of the year.

     Litter has a way of finding its place along our Scenic Byway.  After an entire summer of fishing guides pulling their boats, construction crews with their pick-up trucks without toppers, businesses hauling garbage and a few naughty people there’s garbage everywhere you look. 

     Don’t get me wrong.  The Gunfint Trail is probably one of the cleanest roads you will ever travel and to the person driving by in a vehicle most of this garbage goes by unnoticed.  But to me, walking along the Trail, or even driving, trash has a way of jumping out at me(I hope there isn’t a deeper meaning to that). 

     The litter on the Trail is like shells on a beach to me.  I can’t seem to walk past it without picking it up.  The majority of the trash is empty bait containers, bailers, fishing line, ice bags and tackle wrappers that have flown out of boats that weren’t cleaned out before leaving the landing.  Then there are the numerous empty plastic bottles that probably flew out of someone’s boat or vehicle.  Lots of pieces of scrap lumber, flattened down cardboard and small pieces of paper are also found.  A hubcap, empty gas can, baseball cap and other miscellaneous items appear as well.

     All of this litter has a way of interfering with my walk since I am continually stopping to bend over to pick the garbage up.  I never bring along a bag because I think I will be able to resist the temptation to pick it up if I don’t have an easy way to carry it.  I find myself putting dirty socks, cigarette butts, soggy coffee filters and other nasty things in my pockets only to remember them much later(Usually after they have been through the washing machine). 

     When I come home from my walk I sometimes receive quizzical looks.  Scrap metal, trailer hitches and rusted out barrels have ended up coming home with me.  I have no clue how many pounds of garbage I pick up but I know it must be alot.

     What I am looking for are blinders or a no care attitude.  I’m thinking I’ll have better luck finding blinders but it might be difficult.  They would need to block my vision so I wouldn’t be able to see down or to the side.  The only problem I "see" with that is then I won’t have as many things to blog about.  For with blinders on I would no longer be able to see the bear poop or the tar on the Gunflint Trail.