That Girl’s Blog: Something A Little Trashy

I grew up on the water here on the Cape. I was taught to respect the ocean and our beaches. I love sailing, motor boating, fishing and walks in the sand in all seasons.  And just like the Christopher Cross song: “Well it’s not far back to sanity, at least it’s not for me, And if the wind is right you can sail away and find serenity…”

A day on the water is like hitting the “reset” button… Ahhhh… Don’t you agree?

I recently had the chance to reconnect with an old friend for a day of fishing. We left from Bass River Marina mid-morning and headed out to an area off Nantucket. The weather was perfect and the fishing was fantastic: black sea bass, fluke and bluefish! My arms actually ached from reeling in so many fish and our sides hurt from laughing and telling stories. By all descriptions, it was a perfect Cape Cod summer day. 

We reached our limit of fish and began to head back to Bass River. As we powered back towards the Cape, my friend suddenly cut power to the engines and pulled a tight u-turn. 

“I saw something in the water,” he snapped. With all the shark sightings, I thought we were heading around to see a great white making a meal of an unsuspecting seal. What we saw was so much more depressing -and infuriating. 

We were about 5 miles off Monomoy, and there, out in the middle of nowhere, was a large black garbage bag just floating on the surface. 

We circled around and made a second pass before trying to scoop the bag onto the boat. It was heavy and it tore apart under its own weight, spilling what looked like someone’s discarded weekend-trip-trash into the water. We grabbed a net and made several passes collecting as much garbage as we possible could:

Pizza boxes…plastic bottles…soda cans…cigarettes…raw waterlogged bacon…half eaten hot dogs(still on sticks)… soggy paper plates with leftover browning salad… a pair of black socks… a pair of dirty work gloves… the plastic wrapper from an economy sized package of paper towels… styrofoam coffee cups… the top to a pineapple and the green plastic netting it may (or may not) have come in… 

We scanned the horizon shooting dirty looks at the few boats we could see. There was a trawler, another small cruiser and a sailboat. We speculated at who might be the careless owner of this bag of trash. Had there been any scrap of personal information somewhere in the sopping wet pile of slop, we were ready to track down the owner and hand deliver their lost items to them. 

Of course, there were no identifying clues. There was just trash, which we took back to the dock and heaved in a dumpster. 

I applaud organizations who dedicate their time to keeping the Cape clean like Take Care Cape Cod, Keep Cape Cod Clean, our local DPW crews,and  the Center For Coastal Studies to name a few.  I also applaud the every-day beach-goers and boaters (like my friend Jim) who abide by the old saying “take out what you bring in” and who often bring out MORE than they bring in, because they are willing to pick up the trash other people leave behind. 

Thank You.


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About Cat Wilson

Cat Wilson is "That Girl" on Cape Country 104 – a Cape Cod native and longtime Cape radio personality. She is a passionate supporter of Military and Veteran causes on the Cape and also hosts local music spotlight program, “The Cheap Seats” on Ocean 104.7.
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