Our lack of rain means the water levels at our area lakes are pretty low this year. Since the water is so low, we’ve been able to place our chairs further out on the beach that would normally be covered with water. We couldn’t help but notice an area on the beach that was darker than the rest with an old dock post sticking up out of the sand. As we speculated how the old post with cement at its base could have made its way to shore, an older gentleman strolling by overheard our conversation, stopped, and told us a story. He said many years ago when a local builder rebuilt a nearby dock, he buried the old dock right there and that was probably why the old post was there now. Somehow, as the years went by and the sands and water ebbed and flowed, it no longer held the remains of that old dock.
It wasn’t very long after that conversation when the nails started showing up. Big, thick, rusty, old nails. It seemed like every time the waves rolled in and out we would find one, two, sometimes three more. I don’t know what else they threw in the hole that day thinking…what? That the old dock remains would stay buried under the sand and the water forever? Those rusty nails reminded me that generations ago, a lot of people didn’t contemplate the possibility that decades later their garbage would seep back up through the earth, exposed by the tides of time.
Wood, like paper, can be recycled or will eventually be broken down by the elements. Cement and nails? Not so much. This generation should be mindful of what’s being buried and/or shipped to underdeveloped countries to be buried…and, what could possibly seep back up from the earth twenty or thirty years from now.