Keep the Beautiful in Bonita

Last Saturday the boys and I met up with Ronan’s Honor Society, BHS, in old Bonita to participate in the Keep The Beautiful in Bonita Springs.  I was determined to take Riley along knowing I was likely to have to drag his wheelchair over park grounds.  During the early 90s, I captained Will Rogers Beach for the International Coastal Cleanup as a volunteer for a joint project with the City of Santa Monica, California, American Oceans Campaign and Heal the Bay.  Encouraging awareness of our fragile environment and showing others that we each can make a difference has guided my choices.  Now, as a parent I have not been so active in the community.  At least I can take my boys out to activiley participate in a local clean up.

Bonita Springs had a record crowd of over 300 meeting by the old Banyan tree.  Our Bonita Honor Society was assigned Bonita Springs Elementary as our work site.   Nearby an adorable younger woman snapped photo’s of our group, so I reached out to her.  Dania Maxwell, her name turned out to be, was there on assignment by the Naples Daily News.  Our kids had caught her eye as they were already animatedly discussing each piece of litter they encountered and she planned on tagging along with us.  As it turned out, Dania was great company and had a lovely photo spread out the next morning and it followed in the Bonita Banner.

After the event I was musing to myself over Riley being present yet no one seemed to notice him.  It had gotten under my skin a little.  Riley may not have picked up any trash yet he was certainly a presence.  How is it he barely seemed to be noticed?  As I went along grumbling to myself I pulled up an email from the sweet Ms. Maxwell.    She gave me an idea to pursue for the next BHS activity and then shared “I’m attaching a photograph of Riley, looking good in the light as his brother and classmates pose for a picture behind him. ”  Oh! Riley was certainly noticed. What have I been thinking.  Riley does his own changing the world in his own way and at his own pace.

By the end of the morning we may not have broken any collection records.  We did however, encourage a group of children to make a difference one little cigarette butt at time.


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One Response to Keep the Beautiful in Bonita

  1. Lux Ganzon says:

    Aw. Glad to see you and Riley out and having fun. I hope you guys are doing just fine this weekend. 🙂

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