Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Some People's Trash= Other People's Treasure?

Trash day in Canada is something very different than trash day in the States. In the States you just throw stuff away, OK there is recycling in most places too. In Canada, to quote my cousin, you need a degree to figure out the trash here!

In Mississauga we have several different trash categories. First, you have a 2 bag limit each week for "trash". Second, you have the paper recycling box and the plastic, aluminum, etc. box. Third, you have the "green bin". The green bin is possibly the most disgusting trash bin in the world! This is the bin for all "organic" matter, that means fruit, vegetable, coffee grinds, tea bags, dead flowers, bones, fish, eggshells, grease, fat, sauces, dairy products, baked goods, paper towels and napkins, pizza boxes....yes, all the disgusting stuff that I used to put most of down the garbage disposal that I don't have here! Summertime is an especially lovely time for the green bin, smelly. You cannot put dead animals, dirty diapers or pet waste in the green bin though. Thank goodness!

Which brings me to today's topic....twice a year they lift the 2 bag limit and apparently the sky is the limit for these two, two week periods. They have "free trash" day or week in Nova Scotia in the summer too and talk about junk! You can drive up and down the road and there will be sofas, chairs, toilets, doors, windows, many appliances, Santa Claus decorations, bathtubs and all sorts of other treasures along the road for at least a week. With these "free" trash weeks also comes what can only be referred to as the worlds biggest street sale! People stop and pick up their new found treasures along the side of the road. My guess is that the city publishes the date for this and then waits a week to pick up the stuff, the result being they pick up half of what has been put by the side of the road.

Exhibit A, one grill, two chairs and a light fixture, oh and that nice bookcase!

It really is like a field day when you have the freedom to exceed the 2 bag limit. Throw it all away....NOW! We won't get this chance for another 6 months. I will admit to having possession of at least one item found by the side of the road on free trash week. It was a gift and we proudly display our plastic light up Santa next to our garden in Nova Scotia! (refer to picture in Summer, Part 3 posting) He makes a great scarecrow and who doesn't laugh when they see Santa next to the garden in July?

All kidding aside, I find that when I go somewhere with no recycling it just feels wrong to throw away that glass bottle or the can or the cardboard box. I am trained. I also have noticed how little actual "trash" we have. Must be the smaller family. But when I first heard the 2 bag limit I was trying to figure out how I could do it, now I sometimes only have one bag. How Canadian of me! I must have a degree.


Vincent said...

must have been a shock going down and visiting Mike where they don't have any recycling. For me that was CRAZY!

Lisa said...

It was almost against nature.

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