Saturday September 12 2007, I arrived at my local dump with two pick up trucks filled with discarded event garbage.
Tired, but thrilled that the Port Perry Half Marathon was a great success; I began the automatic motion of race day clean up. As I began to throw my race garbage blissfully into the big green bin I found myself feeling lighter with each countless toss to my old faithful friend, the steel green bin. I loved that it stood there solid and strong willing to take whatever I wanted to throw into its large mouth, without judgment or questioning. Within minutes I would be free from all the leftover trash and could continue on with my exciting day.
As I left the dump I felt accomplished and somewhat lighter, but my heart seemed to pause and take count of the moments that had just passed. Its reflection was troubled and concerned. My head started to shout out the great accomplishments that I had just achieved, trying to overshadow the pause of silent reflection that my heart was determined to send.
In that moment of conflict, a conscious sadness erupted over the heavy impact I had just tossed into our earth’s hands. . It silently accepted my garbage and allowed me to continue with my next task, without looking back or forward.
I asked myself, “Where is my garbage going and how long will our earth be carrying it?”
My answer was clear and very troubling, after all, the race was designed to celebrate an individual’s health and achievement, but I had forgotten the interconnectedness of our planet’s health and our health.
I left the dump a little heavier then I had arrived, loaded down with the knowledge of “I can do better”.
Armed with my mantra “I can do better’ I began the long journey of creating Canada’s first carbon neutral run.