Friday, June 25, 2010

Images of Hope and Devastation..... It's a Mad World

I took a walk out on the beach yesterday to "tour" the damage rolling onto the shore. It was a far cry from the last time I went to the beach recently to finish shooting film for my final photo project in class.

Man, what those pictures will remind me of for the rest of my life: My last normal day on the beach with my family.

I had planned to go out to the beach after my evening class at school, and I had my digital in tow for anything that might pop up. Before I even got out of Pensacola and over the 3-mile bridge, I was greeted with a notable group of protestors holding up loud signs that voiced a re-occuring theme:


I got out and took several pictures and had short conservations which several of our communities finest (and I'm NOT talking police here!). These were everyday people with families and a strong voice they wanted heard.

After getting in my car and heading over the bridge towards the beach, I felt my eyes sting and well up with tears. It was at that time I let it all out as I traveled those 3 miles over the Pensacola Bay.

I cried so hard I was wishing there was a way to hook up the cars windshield wipers to my eyeballs. It was that bad because it was very hard to drive. I wound up being the "old lady" driver doing barely the speed limit and holding up a line of traffic behind me, desperate to pass.

All those drivers must have seen my face when passing by cause not even one gave me the finger as they whizzed by.

When I finally hit the beach with my camera, the truth was laid all before me - total devastation all packaged up in gooey globs of brown for as far as I can see.

It became very, very clear that this was not a "problem" that was going to go away as soon as the media stopped reporting it because the rest of the world was **tired** of hearing about it.

The water sizzled like acid when the tide came in. My guess is that this is cause by the mixture of dispursements in the water as it heats us and forms a gas that is being released into the atmosphere. Then again, no one has ever given me a degree in chemical biology.... yet.

There were no "tar balls" on the beach. What this is is small to very extra large globs of oil that have mixed with sand because of the rolling tide, and created a "ball-like" affect when the oil meets the sand.

I've seen tar balls - these aren't them!

What was even harder to see was the large amounts of pools of oil - bubbling oil that were everywhere! The oil actually has bubbles, and it's thick like cold corn syrup being poured from the bottle.

But this stuff ain't sweet like corn syrup!

Shells normally reserved for my daughters delicate fingers on a warm, sunny day would never again see the bottom of their sand buckets or sandy pockets. Toxic fingers have tightly wrapped themselves around the scattered sand dollars now as if to say "Hands Off!".

I did manage to capture some pictures of "normalcy" before I left. I took this because I had to be left with a upbeat, optimistic view of the home in which I love.

Oh crap! I'm crying again!

Like so many others, this is my home. This is where I had planned to raise my four children - in a safe, clean, community-oriented environment.

We always had a saying; "Even if we had no money, there was always the beach to go to for fun and entertainment."

In several irresponsible decisions, BP and TransOcean STOLE that away from every man, woman, child living along the Gulf Coast, and every living creature that works together creating a delicate balance of life within those Gulf waters.

And this is when I say to Sarah Palin personally:

"How's that Drill-Baby-Drill working for ya!"

Excuse my French, but
"Stupid Bitch!"

When the media has quit being the only ones making hotel reservations, packed up and gone home...

When the media stops reporting on the oil spill because it's no longer "fresh and exciting" anymore....

When the rest of the world is **tired** of hearing about the spill and want to switch to more **interesting** "stuff"...

Those who live around these waters and make their livings off of it will still be here when you won't.

We will still be cleaning these beaches for years to come so you will have someplace "pretty" to spend your vacations.

And we will constantly be searching for fishable waters that have not been deadened by the levels of disbursements being dumped in the Gulf, mixed with the oil and methane gas rising from the deep.

Hopefully we will be able to tell everyone next summer:

"Come On Down - The Water is Fine!"


Jen said...

I went out there last night and cried sitting right on the beach. Thank you for so eloquently writing what so many are feeling. It is so true that once the media is done with it, we will still be dealing with it for years to come. I think it is important to continue sharing my sadness so it is out there.

Gondooo said...

It saddens me to the core Carolyn. And the media is shameless, but so the story goes in most disasters. I have tried to explain the impact this will have to a few people here and, well, they just don't want to hear. People are just too swept up with their own lives to really care about what is happening to others, sad but true. I'm afraid what has happened to the gulf is left to the people of the gulf to mend. Thanks for posting this.

Cindy said...

I have tried to explain the impact this will have to a few people here and, well, they just don't want to hear. People are just too swept up with their own lives to really care about what is happening to others, sad but true. thanx for sharing.