WELLFLEET – On Sunday afternoon, Dana Franchitto returned from a long walk on Lecount Hollow Beach with an armful of trash.
“Whenever I can, I pick up as much trash as I can, especially the stuff that doesn’t biodegrade,” said Franchitto, 64, of Wellfleet. “I’ve got rope, plastic bags, and balloons, which look like jellyfish to the sea turtles and seals.”
Franchitto didn’t go to the beach to pick up trash. He went to the beach because he loves the beach, and then he picked up trash because he loves the beach
In fact, he was actually entertaining the idea of going surfing but the water temperature was too cold. “I don’t have a wetsuit rated for 41 degree water,” he said.
So instead, he went for a half hour exercise walk down the beach, and on the way back, he picked up any trash that he saw. “But I stopped along the way to take in the beauty of the ocean, the waves, and the dunes,” he said.
Standing at the top of the dune, with the vast Atlantic behind him, Franchitto held the trash he picked up and reflected: “As much as I love my friends and family, I feel that as a species we are a blight on the planet, to our own hubris and arrogance,” he said.
And he added, “If everyone just picked up a little bit, the beaches would be cleaner.”
Then he put the trash in his car and looked out at the water. “I love it here,” he said. “I just love it.”
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— Brian Tarcy