Saturday, May 12, 2012

Seen at the beach

...I did not take a cell phone photo of a contraption I saw at the beach.

I used to carp about how City maintenance crew would rake the sand of debris, leaving piles of the stuff or just burying the trash. A man operating a backhoe was picking up piles of debris filled sand, dumping it ever so slowly on top of a screen. The sand would drop out one side, the other side would spit out splintered pieces of drift wood ~ or large pieces of same.

I am guessing all the plastic water bottles, bits of balloons, Styrofoam, chip bags, aluminum cans, parts of bathing suits, clogs, sandals, kids' toys ~ raked up on the beach were feed through that machine along with the drift wood and seaweed. The backhoe driver took piles of the sand to dump on a long, eight or more foot hall sand hill. He then returned, grabbing piles of the driftwood splintered debris to feed slowly through the top of the contraption.

I imagine he dropped the backhoe loads slowing to give small particles of sand to quickly flow to good pile; heavy stuff to be grated and spit out the other side. I watched for a while, intrigued.

I considered taking a photo when backhoe driver picked up those larger pieces of unchewed driftwood, moving them behind a brick wall, that separates the maintenance building from bike path/beach area. I would think I would have seen this being done at some other time, considering how many hours I skated past that area, walked it, especially during my street living days. Since I have not, thought I would do well to take photo right then and there. Cell screen visibility so poor, I might have ended up with a photo of the sand pile or sky, so skipped it, hoping to get a photo another day.

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