Monday, September 01, 2008

Dispose of Plastic Carefully…though There Aren't Any Bins Nearby....

On the way back from work, I eat a packet of potato chips, spiced lentil, or something to ease the churning acids inside. It’s a fifteen minute walk from the office to the railway station and I like to walk, unwinding for the day, forgetting work, and freeing myself, sort of, oh, yeah, liberating myself. How’s that?

I finish eating and hunt for a waste basket, bin of some sort, even a small kachara dabba, as it is called, would do. But for the entire stretch from office in New Marine Lines to V.T. station, there are no waste disposal systems. Oh, that means all my ranting about our having no civic sense goes for a toss, because the gormint hasn’t installed any waste bins at all. What negligence! It’s really chicken and egg here, don’t know who is more callous the public or the gormint. It goes to show that we get the gormint we deserve – i.e. – a callous and negligent one.

I had decided some years ago that I will never throw a plastic on the street, even when nobody is looking. I guess plastic is dangerous stuff and will remain on earth for something like hundreds of years and should be disposed of carefully. So I took a vow not to throw plastic or any garbage around and regularly stuff plastic wrappers and covers in my bag or my pockets till I can safely throw it into a bin.

I had all but forgotten about the plastic in my bag that day. If the plastic remains in the bag for a few days, I squirrel it into a big enough bucket at home which I use as a dump for all my stuff, plastic and all. But as I got down that day at Belapur I saw a youth – similarly obsessed as me – opening his bag and emptying several plastic wrappers into the plastic garbage bin. This made me smile and I waited patiently till he had finished, gave him a smile and dumped my plastic into the bin after him.

He paused, a thin smile playing on his lips. The connection was made, common agenda identified, brotherhood established, secret acknowledgement passed. I hope more and more people become members of our tribe, so if you find this post inspiring please pass it on.

And do say no to plastic and if you ever use one, dispose of it carefully. Good luck!

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