Heal The Bay- Dockweiler
My name is Jorge Ramirez and I am a first year student at Cal State La. For my English 101s class we all participated in a beach clan up at Dockweiler beach with Heal The Bay. On Sunday, October 18th, 2015 I arrived to the beach at 9:00 am, right on time. The coordinators of Heal The Bay divided us into groups of 5 and disbursed to each group a trash-bag to throw trash in and reuse when it is full, a glove each, a pencil, and a form to tally up the kinds of trash we found. I was in a group with fellow classmate Alonso and the 3 other girls I had just met, unfortunately I only remember April. They were kind, positive, fun people all from Fresno. We hit it off pretty well so cleaning up was fun while we conversed. As a group we decided to clean up around the fire pits since we assumed there would be much trash because of the bonfires from the previous day. I was surprised to not find so much trash around there, mainly cigarette butts. The oddest thing we found was a burned pumpkin, the smell was unpleasant but not a repulsive smell. After cleaning up around the pits we went over to the shore where the most common trash there was plastic and again cigarette butts. While we cleaned up we admired the ocean waves, but when we saw the waves come up we were disappointed to see yellow water. At one moment when I reached down to pick up yet again another piece of plastic I noticed the sand was yellow-green up to where the tide came up. I assume it was from the dirty water, but what was it exactly that made the water this dirty? Left with no answer I continued to clean up the beach and talking with the new friends I made. From a distance where we were cleaning I saw a pair of boots with a stuffed animal in one of them, I was not sure if it was trash but then came a long some other students who picked them up. I never went to ask what else was there but that was interesting. It was 10:20, 10 minutes left to meet back up where they set up so we started walking. On the way back we talked with other groups and they said they found a lot of cigarette butts as well. Once we all regrouped with the Heal the Bay coordinators they asked what was the most common found trash, yes, it was cigarette butts. She explained to us that smoking is illegal on the beach so all the cigarette butts are from the city, being washed down over time when it rains. I never thought of that, I just knew it WAS from people smoking the beach, people don't care about that law, they do it anyway. I have witnessed this first hand, only once have I said something but the people smoking just ignored me. Overall the beach clean up with Heal The Bay was a great experience, I was already eager it for since I was first infrared about it. It felt great cleaning up one of my favorite places with a group of people that will make a difference. I was there were more people participating in this but cleaning up on your own is always a great contribution.