Garbage collected at Jamie Baxter campground last week.

Birthday celebration

“It’s my birthday and I’ll do what I want to…do what I want to….” sang every birthday celebrant!

“It’s my birthday and I’ll do what I want to…do what I want to….” sang every birthday celebrant!

A couple of weeks ago I did just that when I celebrated my twenty fourth birthday at Jamie Baxter campground. But instead of having a big bash at night with some friends, I asked them to come help me clean up the campsite and celebrate with food and cake at my mom’s place afterwards.

Jamie Baxter campground has always been sacred to me. It’s a marvelous, isolated place of nature, right in the center of town.

I usually go there every day for a few minutes, if not an hour, to take some time out of my day to spend on myself. And as people we need that. You need it, I need it. Not just once in a while, but everyday. A moment that is all our own.

Sometimes I’ll just sit there feeling the soil beneath my hands, and the wet grass soak my clothes as I meditate on my thoughts. If I’m brave enough—and don’t think that anyone will catch me—I’ll spin around in circles, freely dancing to let my inner child out.

It can feel good to intentionally be a fool.

Unfortunately, this campsite is not always well taken care of. Often it is cluttered with large amounts of debris. Slurpie cups and papers, large empty chip bags and empty alcohol boxes, cigarette butts and broken glass litter this exquisite piece of land.

I am very grateful to all those friends that were able to come out and help me care for this place, and for all the people that pass by and do the same. Taking care of a place is like taking care of your body: when you do good things for it, it comes back to reward you.

So please, if you are visiting Jamie Baxter park, or maybe one of your other favourite places in Houston, take a moment to care for it by picking up any garbage you see. And when you do it, don’t let the thought of whoever littered rattle you, think of it as an opportunity to show your appreciation to a place that you enjoy spending time in.