Last summer in Turkey, Tim Pearce and I spent a couple of nites in Foça, the ancient Phokaia, on the Aegean coast. The place still retains a small-town character, despite the slowly encroaching development. In addition, several small nearby islands add a distinct character to the coast and provide lots of places to explore.
One day my cousin took us to a couple of the islands in his boat. We looked for land snails and while Tim snorkeled, I studied and photographed the zonation of the mollusks at the shore.
The islands are uninhabited by humans, more or less wild, but treeless. One island was full of rabbits and their bones. And the view towards the mainland was great.
Down at the shore, however, civilization in the form of garbage greeted us.
The islands were surrounded by trash of all sorts, most left by the waves, but some giving the impression of having been intentionally dumped on the shore. I cannot comprehend the primitive mentality that justifies the leaving of garbage at a location not designated for that purpose, especially in an area that is supposed to attract tourists.
Trash-strewn coasts are, of course and unfortunately, all over the world. They are present in England, Singapore and the Anacostia River near Washington, D.C.
Will we ever overcome this disease?