I Must Retract Some Comments in Last Week’s Post

When I decided to read Nancy Stephen’s book, The Truth About Butterflies, I did not realize it was a sad story such as those I avoid. By page 5 it was too late. What a woman! What a brilliant writer! Yes it was sad And Yes, I cried in places. Nevertheless, I was unable to put it down. At 2 am I was tired and tried to sleep. Unable to stop thinking about it, I turned the light on again and continued reading. This went on all night until I finally finished it at 5.30 am.

I still avoid sad stories which does not mean I don’t value them. I was deeply affected by the story and brilliance of Joan Mazzota’s, ‘Why Whisper’. Leila Summers story ‘It Rains in February’ likewise kept me reading to the end. These are all writers whose suffering seems to have turned them into brilliant writers, able to express, and touch us with their pain. Whilst I do want to avoid sadness, how can one stop reading books that are written so magnificently? I hurt from their pain but I glow from their words.

Change of subject;

Whilst driving along this pristine mountain top last week, I was jolted to see an empty, plastic bottle discarded by the roadside. Trash is not a thing we are accustomed to seeing here. It reminded me of a few years ago when a friend’s son came to visit from Tacoma Wa. His first words were “Wow. How clean and green it is here.”

It is indeed green and clean and there is not a day I don’t appreciate it. Some years ago, I too lived in Tacoma Wa. After awhile you don’t notice the trash so much. But on a recent visit to see an old neighbor, the filth littering the pavements appalled me. We had lived not far from a shopping strip with fast food establishments. The refuse from those places was everywhere. I was so glad I no longer lived there.

Then I got to thinking about India and how filthy that beautiful country is. Not only is filth all over the streets but countless plastic bags have been blown by the wind up into the trees. I love trees and to see them covered in dust until the leaves look brown and see the branches cloaked with plastic is heart-breaking. Of course, the government, at least when I was last there, had not installed trash cans anywhere. However, there are many places here minus trash cans and we just keep the trash until we find a proper place to dispose of it. Then I recalled travelling on an Indian train with my daughter-in-law’s aunt. The aunt is a lovely, educated woman. After we finished drinking chai from paper cups, she took the cups and tossed them out of the train window. I must have looked horrified because she said “That’s a bad habit. I know.”

I am always a bit outspoken and even though I like this lady a lot, I retorted “Yes. And I would expect you to know better Charanjeet. You are a cultured woman. They need people like you to set an example if anyone is to change.”

As more and more migrants arrive in Australia – usually choosing to settle in the cities, I notice that some back areas of Sydney are not as clean as they once were.  Governments – councils, need to educate by placing commercials about civic pride on the television and by increasing the fines for littering. If we love our country, wherever it is, we should do what we can to care for it.


10 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Judi Haley Schoppmann
    May 06, 2013 @ 22:36:29

    Hi June – I sooooooooooo agree with you about trash – I can’t stand to see it just thrown in the streets. I always save mine until I find a trash can. Your part of Australia sounds so beautiful. Would love to visit some day. It’s on my “bucket list.” Hope everything is well with you. *Judi*


  2. Joanne
    May 07, 2013 @ 01:56:17

    My mantra has always been, “What’s within you, surrounds you.” Remember NYC Junie Moon? 🙂 Crazy is crazy. I also love God’s green earth.


  3. Susanne Morris
    May 08, 2013 @ 05:40:32

    That is a simple but brilliant idea… trash lessons. And not just for newcomers.


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    Oct 02, 2013 @ 21:13:43

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