Saturday, November 27, 2010

Heroes of the Day

Del Dot Roadside Litter Pickup Crew Volunteers on Oyster Rocks Road November 27, 2010

We hear a lot about heroes these days.  

Pictured above are my candidates for heroes of the day.  

You won't see these heroes featured on Anderson Cooper's "Heroes" program.  

You won't read about these heroes in the newspaper.

You won't see these heroes presented with an award by President Obama.

No, these heroes don't fit in any of the above categories.

These heroes are a group of fine folks who have volunteered to pick up the trash that is strewn aside our beautiful roads here in southern Delaware.

I was returning to my home off of Oyster Rocks Road, east of Route 1early this cold and windy afternoon.  I had just spent about two hours teaching my elderly friends Bob and Jim how to use e-mail on their new computer.  Jim and Bob live in a doublewide about two miles outside of Georgetown, on Anderson Corner Road on twenty-two acres of scrub woodland.  I'm always disheartened when I drive over to Bob and Jim's when I see the amount of trash and litter that lies along side the road towards their place. Today was no exception.

Thus it was with a glad heart when I crossed over Rt. 1 towards my home off of  Oyster Road when I saw a group of chartreuse day glo folks picking up the litter on Oyster Rocks Road.  

Oyster Rocks road off of Rt. 1 goes back two miles to the Broadkill River.  Bill and I had just driven back there this morning for an early morning ride on this breezy and chilly Saturday and I was again disheartened by all the littler along the road.  I was especially saddened to see a full mattress tossed into the beautiful, natural wetland growth.  I mentioned to Bill "How can anyone take their old mattress and toss it along side the road in such natural beauty?"  Bill said nothing because he understood as I do, there are basically two types of people on this earth:

  • Those that litter
  • Those who don't and who pick up the litter of those that littert

I am in the latter category.  

I myself have on several occasions traveled down the length of Oyster Rocks Road and picked up crushed beer cans, empty cigarette packets, plastic soda bottles and plastic bags.  The last I drove the length of Oyster Rock Road and picked up two full trash bags of litter.

Bill has given up on picking up the litter.  In fact he becomes angry with me when I pick up the litter.  So I have to sneak out and pick up the litter.  However, lately the amount of litter has even overwhelmed me.  Now, when I pick up the litter I pick up the Usual Suspects:  beer cans and plastic soda bottles.  I leave the rest.  The topper probably came when there was the slaughtered, cleaned carcass of a deer (head included) tossed aside the road right where the Broadkill meets Oyster Rocks Road.  

When I drove past this happy group this afternoon and turned into my development.  Then I thought "I want to thank them for what they are doing today."  I turned around and drove out of my development and caught up with them farther on down Oyster Rocks Road.  I pulled my car over to the side of the road and parked it.  I got my camera and got out and motioned to some of them to get their attention.  A couple of them turned around to see what I wanted.  I said "I want to thank you for what you're doing today.  Thank you very much!"  Everyone burst out into big smiles, me included.  This is what the good life is all about folks.  Good deeds and people being acknowledged for their good deeds in helping their fellow human beings making this planet a better place to live.

In unison a chorus of smile greeted me and several put the thumbs up sign.  I thanked them again and asked if I could take their picture.  Someone said "Sure!" and they piled up in the flatbed of the pickup truck and posed for this wonderful picture.  

I told them I was going to write about this in my blog and asked if I could use their picture.  Again another hearty "Sure!"  

I thanked them again, gave them my card, and after giving them a thumbs up sign I left, my faith in the goodness of the human heart renewed. 


  1. Anonymous6:55 PM

    Howdy Neighbor! Loved meeting you today. Your "hero" article was heart warming and made us feel thankful for awesome Neighbors! We try to plan our road clean -ups at least 3x a year. Hope you can join us for spring clean up. Smiles...

    Sherry Stephens
    Stefanie Stratton

  2. Ron,

    What a coincidence. I just finished writing about the crew picking up litter along the hiking trails here and criticized a graffiti loser who spray painted his name along one of the trail bridges.

    I'm still working on this post so it isn't out there yet, although I suspect you aren't reading me anymore anyway.

    Were these people with some group? Some look like they might be in the same family. They all look happy. Doing such things should make you happy.


  3. Lar,

    I didn't know you wrote a new posting. I see the one you wrote about your walk through the trails. Was there a new one posting? I used to get notices every time you updated but I don't get those notices anymore. I have a thumbnail of your blog on my blog. I look to see if the pictures are different but it looked the same. That's why I haven't been over to your blog. I'll check it today. I enjoy your blog and wouldn't stop reading it. I wasn't a fan of your religious blog though. That's the one I didn't read.


  4. Ron,

    I wrote seven posts in the last couple weeks that I wasn't sure you read. They are:

    Lost in Transition, A Richer Life, Faces Out of the rain, Rockwood:Joe’s Last Manse, Rockwood: Where Civilization Crumbles, Rockwood: Conversations with Dogs and Rockwood: Mark Trail and Lost Stuff

    You did comment on one other that came in amongst these.

    Maybe it is because the photo may have looked similar in some and several had "Rockwood" as the first word of the title.

    The first three: Lost in Transition, A Richer Life and Faces Out of the Rain are autobiographical and about the 'fifties.


  5. Wow! Seven posts? No wonder you were questioning if I was reading your posts. No, I didn't read them nor did I know you posted new ones. I check the thumbnail and it looked the same. I usually ready your posts at work because they are so relaxing. I'll catch up on them this week when I go into work Thursday. Thanks for letting me know.

  6. Ron,

    I was surprised not to get a comment on my post, "Mercatores Erepta Morti".

    I just posted a new one called, On the down Low: The Last Plateau.


  7. I just looked at "Mercatores Erepta Morrti" I started to read that post but I stopped because I thought it was one of your fiction stories. I now see that it is more which I am interested in reading. I'll catch up on all your posts when I'm at work. I didn't realize you were updating your posts because, as I said before. I check the thumbnail pictures and it didn't look like you were updating your posts. You have taken weeks off before and I thought you were doing that again.

    My apologies. Don't delete the posts. I want to read them..


  8. Ron,

    I don't do any fiction in the "Drinking of Elder Men" Blog, although I have been writing a lot of the things as if they were about a character called The Kid. These are not fiction, but autobiographic accounts.


  9. good for these people !
    Were there more of them !

  10. Lar,
    Thanks for letting me know you don't do fiction on"Drinking of Elder Men." I love reading your autobiographical accounts. As a matter of fact, biographies are my favorite type of reading. I'm reading two biographies now: Hedy Lamarr and Elton John. And I might say your autobiographical accounts are as interesting as any celebrities account of their lives!

  11. Ron,

    Well, I just posted another chapter in the biography of The Kid, "Wacky Words Can Crack Cocoons".

    If you haven't read it, I will recommend a book: "The Devil in the White City". It is a fascinating history about the building of the Columbian Exposition Fair in Chicago and America's first serial killer, H. H. Holmes all back in the 1890s.


  12. Spo,

    In Delaware we even have prisoners from the local jails out on the roads and byways picking up trash. I've tried to take pictures of them but the last time I did I scared of by the menacing looks. Apparently that activity on their part wasn't strictly voluntary unlike the folks I came across this past Saturday. Still, I appreciate their good deeds for the betterment of all of us who live on this planet.

  13. Loved the heroes and the post.

  14. Notice all the big smiles Diane!


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