Friday, August 17, 2018

Keep España Tidy

Our local English-language radio station Spectrum has this excellent campaign to clean up the beaches.
Spanish beaches are often filthy (as are the verges of almost all roads, the countryside and anywhere else which is is outside the private home). Spaniards, so generous and thoughtful towards people they know, meet or inter-react with, appear to have no concern for the public in general - and will often be surprised to find that - for example - they are inadvertently blocking the way... or having an innocent chat in front of a zebra crossing... or leaving a quantity of trash near to a dustbin rather than in it.
The Mojácar beaches, it must be said, are cleaned daily and are in great shape (a cost which must be borne by the tax-payer). But those who visit will often leave their wrappers, fag-ends, bottles, cans and cardboard trash behind them, saying 'well, the cleaners get paid to pick it up and they need the job' (which is a bit like punching someone in the mouth and saying 'the dentist needs the job').
In Almería, on the popular Playa de Zapillo, the accrued trash by nightfall is astonishing. Mounds of garbage. The Almerians like to picnic on the beach, and will bring chairs, a table, an umbrella, a cold-box and a radio. Not all of it is returned, needless to say.
Wandering along the beach the other night, barefoot in the sand, I could see not only the surprising amount of crap on the beach, but also a fair amount of it floating in the water. Then two young black kids, exercising nearby, surprised me by picking up the litter on that patch of sand, and taking it to the nearest dustbin.
It may be a cultural thing, but it is surprising to see few if any campaigns about keeping this beautiful country clean.
So, well done Spectrum.

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