Friday, 25 May 2012

Green Misunderstandings

Door bell rings. Put head out of window (can't be bothered to go all the way to the citofono) and look down at a man and a woman surrounded by brown plastic bins.  They have come to change my life and save the planet.

All the community wheeled rubbish bins in which we can pop stuff at any time but  are emptied every morning before 7am are to be removed.  Instead we are to place our rubbish, properly separated into sacks of organic, sacks of paper, and sacks of whatever else is left, on the doorstep  every day.

"There's only one bin" I remark. 
"Each kind of rubbish has a different day.  You need only one bin.  Just remember which rubbish goes out on which day. Organic has three days and the other two a day each.  Before 8am."

I can hear the light tap of claws in festa as the rats and other vermin celebrate the leaving of dinner every night outside  doors throughout the village.  But they celebrate too soon.  No bin is to be out before 6am.  Gulp.  It's all right in the summer and I suppose if I get it ready every night before bedtime it's just a matter of taking it down the stairs first thing, unbarring the doors, and putting it outside -but  in the main street opposite the town hall?  Or I could choose the turning into the piazza della Chiesa, or put it all out in the back lane and hope the men don't miss it.

"Who lives here?" they asked. "Why are there three of you? And in different streets?"
"Think of it as a block of flats with lots of HGs inside and hand over the bins!"  (With three bins I can manage this separation stuff much better.)
"No. We're taking these two to the piazza Chiesa and the via del F..." they  decide.  "Where is the piazza della Chiesa?" Where are these people from?  I'm not good at local accents and these two are from far away.  "There," I point, "That piazza with the large church in it, at the corner." "And the via del F...?" 
"Backdoor.   Go down to the other end, turn left and first left and there you are.  There's a Landrover parked outside.  Can't miss it.  I'll race you from inside the building. Uno, due, tre -  via ."

They handed over the three bins where we stood at the main door.   "Is your husband in?" the man asked hopefully.  I could see it written all over their faces:  English - they're very strange, the English.


Nomad said...

Does 'loony bin' sound familiar?

lilith said...


hatfield girl said...

Perhaps I could submit my posts to you before pressing 'send' and you could give them perfect titles, Nomad.

How I wish I had called it 'Loony Bin'.

Can you imagine, L, standing there in your nightie wondering what day it is precisely, and wishing you'd put on dressing gown and slippers, on a February (indeed any) morning, never mind every morning for the rest of my life. On the bright side, a nightie renewal will be needed. Can't open the main door under the gaze of all those town hall windows without looking good.

lilith said...

You are going to be very busy in the early morning every day for the rest of your life, as you say. I think such a task requires a wardrobe of variations on this theme...

Nomad said...

HG, thanks for the offer, but no thanks.

Our garbage chappies here call three times a week - very early as we are at the start of their round - so may I suggest that you should consider doing what we do and that is to put the [in your case, appropriate] rubbish out last thing at night before the dustmen are due early the next morning. Then if we oversleep or can't be bothered it all magically disappears before we are up.

Bill Quango MP said...

The flaw is always the capacit.
The old borough had two big wheelie bins. It was quite manageable.

The new has a tiny crate and a bigger crate. To last 2 weeks.

Jeff Wood said...

So, are you supposed to keep the organic in the fridge until it is time to put it out? Summer is finally starting, and in a month we here will be on about 90 Fahrenheit. You are even further south.

And what about that useful village institution, putting out surplus goods? Yesterday I carefully reduced an old table to manageable components, and carried it out to the bin area in the evening. This morning, I saw it had found a new home.

At least, we are a hillside village, mostly mediaeval. Even Ape carts have a hard time getting into the alleys. I have faith that our bins, set at various levels, will remain and we can sort as we please there.