Thursday, March 26, 2015

Oil and Misery

There's an aquatic oil spill that's almost literally in my backyard.  The creek - or brook, I don't know what the difference is - that runs through the undeveloped property behind my rear lawn was tainted by an oil leak from someone's storage tank. The leak occurred on March 15, and for the past several days, the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection has been working to clean it up.  

There are tarps running down the length of the creek through the property, with a plastic makeshift barrier at the edge of a culvert, where the creek comes out into the property from under some other backyards (where the leak likely originated) . . .

. . .and another set of barriers at the end of the culvert that carries the creek to the opposite side of the street, where it runs in people's front yards.

I've been depressed over the winter weather that's been persistent so late into March and possibly well into April, and this revolting development does not help my mood.  This creek may not have been as pristine as Prince William Sound or the Louisiana bayou was, but it's just another despoiling of nature, this one within plain view out of my rear window.
In May, the children in my neighborhood come and beautify the undeveloped property the creek runs through to make a park out of it.  There's already a bench there, and in the springtime the children plant flowers and clean out the debris in and around the creek.  I doubt it's going to happen this spring. First of all, I don't see spring coming this year.  Secondly, the cleanup of this oil is expected to take weeks, even months.  That should discourage anyone from doing anything about the property.
I've been in a bad mood for much of the winter, but I looked forward to spring weather, some relief from the winter chills, and some color from the flowers and the cherry blossom trees.  That all seems a long way off now, longer a way than it did even in February.  Winter weather might not be done until the middle of April, and maybe not even then.  I'm also well into middle age, and I don't like being reminded every winter of what I haven't accomplished yet, but spring and the renewal of life always gives me hop.  This year?  No hope.  No spring.
And there won't be any renewal of life in this creek for a long time. :-(       

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