Monday, June 21, 2010

Time to think

I've got another cold or virus or other unnamed coughing-sneezing-body aching awful.    I don't feel like driving out for food and, of course, there is no canned/frozen stuff in the house since I don't usually need that stuff.    I need to stock up, especially since I've had a million viruses up here; I think all my immunities were to viruses local to my old home, I have a million new germs to face up here.

Meanwhile, slowly, I've been sewing my hodge-podge of towels and washcloths for Craft Hope's "Project 8", which is collecting materials to help clean the oil drenched wildlife who have been affected by the BP oil spill in the gulf.   I found some old quilting cotton in one of the boxes we packed away after my mother died, and some old tattered towels I'd set aside as rags, and I am cutting them to size (10"x10" for the cloths, and 14"x27" for the towels).    I am machine-stitching a zig-zag around the edges to prevent fraying, even though I could probably just pull the threads until the cloths seem secure.   They are going to be used to wipe oil from seabirds and turtles and dolphins and then thrown away, so they don't have to be fancy.   Good thing, because I've had lots of frustrations with my machine's tension, and I'm using odds and ends of bobbin thread, so my finished product is very unfinished, indeed.   I will be sending them this weekend, along with some Dawn dishwashing liquid, to Kimberly Davion, c/o IMMS Oil Spill Relief, 1700 East LaRua Street, Pensacola, Florida 32501 

Making these simple cloths is mindless work so, as I am sewing (in between coughs and sneezes), I'm thinking a lot about the oil spill, and the damage it will do for years to come.   I am happy where I live; the weather is generally temperate, with few really hot or really cold days (although I could do without the snow).  Michigan is lush and green, open water or wooded land is always a short drive away, and we don't have hurricanes or serious earthquakes.  But I realized that, aside from family, there is probably nothing that has brought me more pleasure than the Gulf of Mexico.   I love to walk the beaches, hear the waves, watch the birds feeding on the shore, see the pelicans dive and the ospreys fish, and find the magical shells that wash right up to me as I'm walking.   I love seeing a flock of roseate spoonbills take flight, and watching the white pelicans bob along like giant marshmallows.   The Gulf of Mexico is where my favorite Michigan birds spend their winters, and where much of the world's seafood spends its infancy. 

But the Gulf of Mexico isn't the only place being destroyed by our appetite for oil.    Check out what has been happening for years behind the scenes in Nigeria, where people live and suffer in an endless oil spill.     No matter how many birds and turtles we save in the gulf this time, this disaster will be just the tip of the proverbial iceberg unless we commit ourselves to cleaner energy and a simpler way of life.    I'm mad at BP, no doubt about it, but we all need to find ways to conserve energy so that greedy goons like BP don't have the leverage they have now.


Little Black Scrap Cat said...

I greatly admire your initiative in sewing towels and cloths to help in the oil clean up. It saddens me that nobody has come up with a way to stop the oil that continues to spill into the Gulf. I do hope you begin to feel better soon!!

Snowbird said...

Living here in Florida, we are never very far away from the news about the Disaster in the Gulf. Many of us who live here on the island have signed up to walk the beach, if the time comes, to look for tar balls, oil sheen etc. I hope I never have to take those kind of walks. I much prefer doing the Sanibel Stoop.

By the way, I have the sore throat, cough and sneezes too. I'm thinking it's allergies but who knows.