Recently I was on vacation in the Mississippi, Louisiana, and Alabama area. We were a party of four and none of us had been in this part of our country before and didn't really know what we would see. These states, along with West Virginia, are usually at the top of the list in many negative aspects.
We expected to encounter bad roads, litter, and urban blight. This was not the case. We did a lot of driving and sightseeing for a week. Along the way we found ourselves comparing our roads and our environment back home to theirs. We saw very little litter and their roads were great. We actually saw litter being picked up.
When we came back to Almost Heaven West Virginia we realized our roads are horrible in comparison to Mississippi, Louisiana, and Alabama. It was depressing to drive along Route 2 and up Route 89 and see all the litter. I used to stop and pick a garbage bag or two up trying to make a difference. The volume of trash is much greater now along with the gas boom traffic. I would be afraid of getting run over. I can go to town and on my trip back I see more litter than there was on my trip in.
I'm all for progress, but I don't see our area looking better than it did five or 10 years ago. My out-of-state relatives see the decline, too. I love my state and hometown and wish those who live here and those who are here temporarily would give it the respect it deserves.
Jane A. Batten