I was driving slowly down the coast. I parked in the shade of a tree to cool down the heat. I opened the windows. I wanted to take a breath, looking at the green. The park was full of randomly thrown garbage. As if it was impossible to leave it clean, I felt angry at the staff who didn’t clean it.
My eye caught a bag lying next to the garbage container. He stood still as if there was something inside him. However, it was empty. Both empty and still. How come he wasn’t flying on this breeze? It was as if he had no energy. The bag was tired.
For a moment it looked human. A person with slumped shoulders, his head falling between his shoulders towards his chest. There was no distinction between men or women. Like he’s a little stocky, a little pot-bellied. He was tired, but obviously.
In fact, there were times when it was very useful, but because it was punctured a little bit, they just left it next to the garbage. Like a friend who was suspended because he had a small flaw… Or, I don’t know, like an employee who was fired at the first mistake after all the work he had done… Like a veteran shoe that was ignored when a new one arrived…
Suddenly the bag spoke.
They said you don’t work as well as you used to. They threw it away. They did not ask why. No one asked how tired he was, how worn out he was. They didn’t wonder why it didn’t work like it used to.
“However, when I was a little full, what winds would blow and I would not fly. My handles would fly around like hair blowing in the breeze. But my torso’s intact, my feet are on the ground. My self-confidence was high. I was a goody two shoes. I was squeaky clean in my early days.
What was there to be a playmate for the child at home?
I wish I hadn’t let him run with me on his head, fill me with water and make his friends wet. I should have shrunk and hidden myself in the bottom drawer when he was looking for a bag. I was excited when I saw the boy. I’ve never played games before. I thought I’d have fun. And so it was. We had a wonderful time with the child for about a week. Until that morning when we went to the seaside. The boy quickly shoved the bucket into me with a plastic shovel. You know, rakes played in the sand. One of his teeth went through me. My left side is pierced.
I squeezed myself so that the hole wouldn’t grow, so that my playmate wouldn’t be let down by falling toys. I made it all the way to the beach. I knew the average lifespan of the bags, but I didn’t think I would reach the end so soon. I was done when I went crazy.
I wish they had made me into a ball for the cat at home to play with. The house cat loved both my rustling and my lightness. They could have turned me into a toy by twisting me in their hands and tying knots.”
Would everyone who was finished be forgotten so quickly?
He was sad. He was coming up with solutions on his own, but he knew it wouldn’t work. People did not hear the spirit of things. They lived alone and solely for their own comfort. He continued where he left off:
“How useful we are to you, but how quickly you give up on us.
You are always angry with us for polluting the nature.
We do so much work, your hand is always on us. But when you’re done, you don’t think to recycle. You don’t know how to use it. You are wasting. You leave it lying around. Then you put the entire burden of environmental pollution on us.
Do we want to clog the stomach of a fish, get caught in the beak of a bird? Do we want to witness disasters on earth for five hundred years, a thousand years?
I would like to be recycled instead of being thrown next to a container. Actually, if it was up to us, we might as well not exist. But if we exist, then one should know how to use it, how to evaluate it, how to transform it forward or backward. he concluded.
It wasn’t the bag. The problem was the personwho both consumed and wasted it.
It wasn’t going to be a matter of casually throwing a bag with a hole in the bottom next to a container.
Not by thinking you are the ruler of the ecosystem.
Not by blaming everything outside himself.
As much as he took responsibility, as much as he listened to the voice of nature, the spirit of things, he would become human.
I got out of the car and took the bag carefully. I put it in the trunk of the car to throw it in the plastic recycling bin.
Who knows, maybe he would continue talking in the car and I would listen.