Tuesday, December 4, 2012

The Ocean and My Hypocrisy


An unfortunate observation I made in the Maldives is that people throw their garbage right into the ocean. From the time we stepped off the ferry from the airport into the city of Male, I saw people throwing stuff on purpose into the water. At first I thought surely it was a mistake, but after a while I realized it's just what people do. We took several ferry rides during our stay here and witnessed people throwing empty 1.5 liter water bottles out the window. One particularly upsetting time I had had enough and scolded a teenage boy: "you just killed a fish." (What a hypocrite!)

Sadly, when snorkeling among the beautiful Maldivian reefs, you can see some of this garbage along the ocean floor. Summer and I saw cans and bottles, plastic and metal. We saw bed frames, parts of suitcases, old barrels, clothing, etc. It was very heartbreaking. Otherwise the ocean here is absolutely pristine. The visibility is amazing, and the marine life is the most colorful and diverse I've ever seen. Maybe some day I'll come back here as a volunteer and visit little schoolchildren in their classes wearing a fish costume and holding up a sign that says "please don't put your garbage in my house" and change the future of Maldives! (Hypocrite!)

Fish: it is my solemn pledge to you. I'll yank you from your home and slit your throat and then eat you...but I will NOT throw garbage in your house!




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