oh, the irony...

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One of my biggest pet peeves is people who litter.  
It drives me crazy to see people toss cigarettes or trash out the windows of cars.  In Texas, the campaign  "Don't Mess with Texas" was  a huge success in deterring the litter problem.  I would personally like to see a national campaign of "Only stupid people litter".  :)
Somehow, it is even worse to live here in this beautiful, natural, rural setting and see trash on the side of the road.  I am the "self-appointed" road monitor in my neighborhood and often pick up litter when we go on our dog walks.  As much as it makes me angry that I have to do it, it also can turn my whole day around to do something beneficial for my neighborhood.  I swear you can hear the forest whispering "thank you" as I/we pick up trash along the road. 

One day, Dan and I were on a dirt road in our neighborhood picking up trash and I climbed up an incline into some bushes to pick up a good half dozen beer bottles.  In climbing out, I tripped over a limb and fell.   I saw the sharp pointed edge of a thick, jagged stump rushing towards my face as I fell.  I turned my head at the last second and the stump scraped the side of my neck leaving a large gash, but I survived.  In the split-second of the fall I was seeing my obituary:  woman dies picking up trash!  I did, however, land with all of the beer bottles safely in my arms. ;)  Poor Dan stood there watching the whole event unfold in slow motion.  He relived the image for days and banned me from going into the brush to retrive litter; which, of course, lasted until the next time I spotted a bottle in the woods. ;)

One of our daily walking routes is referred to by us as "the loop."  The other day as Ella and I walked the loop I picked up trash along the road.  We were about 3/4 the way around when my grocery bag was full of liter and I decided to leave the bag on the side of the road (to pick up later, or sometimes a nice phantom neighbor will assist my efforts and pick up the bags, or piles I make until I can get back with more bags)  and cut through a path in the woods to get home (thankfully, there is never any litter in the forest.)

 It was a gorgeous Fall day and I wanted to sit in the forest for a while and feel its calm energy.  I found an abandoned stone wall, long forgotten, that was deep in the trees off of the path.

As I sat on there on the wall I happened to noticed what looked like the bottoms of two bottles buried at the base of a nearby tree.   They were barely visible under decades of forest debris and pine needles.


I dug them out... a treasure!  Two antique bottles with that slight purple tinge that sitting out in the sun for 100 years will do to glass.   One bottle had writing on it and looked to be a whiskey bottle; the other bottle was unmarked, but had a wide mouth.  I was delighted, and immediately started to ponder who had placed them there and when?  Who was the last person to touch them?  Perhaps one of the men who had built the wall?   I'm thinking I would need a shot or two;) of whiskey if I had just spent the day moving huge stones to make a wall!

As I happily carried my newly found "treasures" out of the forest it suddenly dawned on me....

Oh, the irony.
My "treasures" were in reality just someones one hundred year old litter!

I brought my new finds home, soaked them for days and cleaned them up.  One is indeed a whiskey bottle from the  H.W. Huguley Co. that was in Boston from 1834 to 1916 (according to ebay it isn't of great value.)  The other has a fabulous shape, but no marking except for a "2" on the bottom.  I have no idea what it contained.  (Any bottle experts out there?!)  I'm going to get a large cork stopper to fit the top so that I can use it for ???!

So, do you suppose I should leave all the Bud Lite cans and Miller bottles on the road, and in one hundred years someone will think that they, too, are "treasures"?!

a few more shots from our walk through the forest...