The rainy season has begun. Winter will be here soon. School has begun and Ramadan is over, summer is behind us. This is the time of year that I go to the beach. I enjoy feeling the wind whipping around me and watching the waves crashing in along the shore.
A walk along the beach, combing for treasures washed up on the beach. Shells, seaweed, sand polished stones, driftwood, a bottle with a note inside... what do I find ...
Plastic bottles, garbage, paper, torn carpets, chicken bones from long-ago meals, old tuna cans and assorted trash are among the debris washed ashore by the waves.
During the summer months the beach is rented out to people who create temporary beach resorts for the season. They rent tents, beach chairs and palm frond covered shelters to beachgoers. Small cafe's are opened that serve snacks and provide coffee and waterpipes for those that smoke sheesha. Some have play equipment; slides and swings for the children.
At the end of the season they close up shop and leave, leaving behind all the mess that was created by the thousands of people who used the beach during the hot Libyan summer months. Who is responsible for cleaning up this mess?
Every section seems to have some kind of building on it - all of the buildings are made using the cheapest materials available. Unplastered cinder-block, ugly paint.
Many of the places have bathrooms and dressing areas. Old-fashioned hole in the floor toilets...
... with the drainpipes leading directly to the sea. How disgusting! Who would want to swim in a sewer?
Is there a solution for this problem? Who is responsible for cleaning up this mess? It's not only ugly but dangerous and an environmental disaster. Is this a way to encourage tourism in Libya? Are the taxpayers going to foot the bill of the cleanup costs? Or is it just going to be left this way in the hopes that it gets washed out to sea?