The day started well with two media outlets being interested in our visit to Warrnambool. We got there in good time and parked near the city for a bit of food. As he hopped back in, a gentleman pulled in front of us saying "Weren’t you supposed to be on the beachfront? I've been doing circles trying to find you!". Turns out the papers had published the wrong starting time and we were late, apparently. We barely got onto the field, when we were again stopped by a car, asking "What’s the issue you think – why don't we already have the scheme in Victoria?". Great question, I said – and I will talk to you, but can we first park the Bottle?
Once we were parked and set up, people were literally diving in, grabbing sign-up sheets off us and we also got a real sense of how frustrated people were. This scheme is so long overdue, they said, and they feel that they are missing out on fundraising opportunities while also having to put up with so much more litter. I asked the first guy, who had pulled us up after lunch, if he'd mind if I film him expressing his views. I can't print his colourful response, unfortunately, but he said, he's got four wool bales of containers at home and can't get anything for them.
This was repeated a couple of more times, as some hadn't understood we only refund up to $2 per head. It was lucky we had some local support in Kate from the shire, Jeremiah from the Warrnambool Coast and Landcare Group and Colleen and others from Good Will Nurdle Hunting. We were inundated by people wanting to sign petitions, drop off containers – all the while being interviewed and photographed. All up, we filled 7 bags with containers and it's the first time we had to store some in the bottle, as the ute tray is filling up.
Tomorrow afternoon we'll be on Fiddler's Green in Port Fairy, supported by the local scout group under Sea Scouts Group leader Michelle Arnold (Fiddlers Green from 2pm to 4pm)
A local came and knocked on the door of the place we’re staying in Port Fairy just then and asked about the Bottle and container refunds. He insisted on signing the petition right there in the drizzling rain. I think tomorrow we'll be mobbed again and we couldn’t be happier…
See you there!
BigBottle on Breakwater, looking out to Middle Island in Warrnambool (famous landmark)
Annett being photographed for the Warrnambool Standard