When you first think of plastic bags, what do you think of? For me, it is not the pollution issue or their threat to animals (although now you probably are thinking of those!). My mind first takes me to American Beauty.
The beauty of the piece of “trash” caught in the wind and the joy in character Ricky Fitt’s voice as he describes it makes me smile every time I think of it, which is surprisingly often. And his last line of that monologue, “Sometimes there’s so much beauty in the world I feel like I can’t take it, like my heart’s going to cave in,” is so poignant, especially since he considers that video to be the most beautiful he’s ever taken.
In complete contrast to that serene image, my mind also associates the crinkling sound of plastic bags with an unpleasant but memorial part of my trip to Spain.
Hillary and I regularly used hostels in our travels. They were excellent congregating points for us. After a long, glorious day of museums and sight seeing, we would retire back to our bunks, normally for a good night sleep.
On our last night in Madrid, however, the entire dorm room was awakened in the middle of the night by one of our fellow residents going through her belongings, all of which were kept in plastic bags. Crinkle, crinkle, crinkle. It wouldn’t have been so bad, but it seemed to go on forever.
I can’t remember if someone yelled out to stop it, but we were all mentally screaming it. Finally the noise did stop, and we were eventually able to drop back into sleep for the remaining early morning hours.
I find it amazing that a decade later, Hillary and I both remember that scene so vividly. Strangely enough, whenever either of us mentions Madrid, despite all the really cool things that we did there, the first thing the other person says is, “The plastic bags!”
Do you have a lasting travel memory that has nothing to do with your travel location? or Has anyone else seen a plastic bag caught in the wind and thought of American Beauty?