Well, the weather wasn’t too bad and luckily it only started to rain late during the strike, but the foxes and seagulls had one field day after the other, and now rubbish that was carefully packaged into bin bags at first is floating freely along the streets, spreading out in a pattern determined by the wind and the rain. You get the picture, I’m sure.
However, this is NOT the main subject of this blog: I was considering how this strike has affected me, and probably a lot of other people as well. I have found that not being able to simply get rid of my rubbish as I would normally do has somewhat changed my approach to rubbish in general.
First of all, I have always separated recyclables from the rest, with lots of cardboard, tins, glass and such being thrown out in a more responsible way than just ditching it all into the “just burn it all” bin. That usually leaves me with packaging materials (mostly plastic) and organic waste (like teabags, vegetable cut-offs and leaves, etc). I feel that I’m pretty good as not bringing too much packaging waste into my home (shopping with my own containers at the market and generally eschewing things that are packaged beyond belief), but still, there is some of that accumulating in my kitchen bin. I tend to take one 15 liter bag of that kind of rubbish out maybe once a month, so NOT exceedingly much.
My biggest bug bear is organic waste. I have not yet found a solution to depose of this in a responsible way. Organic waste is somewhat collected around here, but without a car to take my stuff there it is pretty much impossible to make use of those options. So I end up separating anything that is likely to decompose from the sheer plastic stuff in my bin, and collect this in smaller containers (like drink cartons, etc.) and throwing those in the large bins outside separately, both to be able to use the plastic bin for longer without the smell, and to make at least some use of the cartons, too.
Why do I bring this up? Well, while I seem to have a relatively solid grip on what I bring into my house, the strike has forced me to look once again at the way I take things out! And in the process I have taken another good look at my way of processing intake and outgoing rubbish, and reconsider some things. For example, I have now looked into more local options to get rid of my organic rubbish, and am in the process of getting access to a little composting scheme in my neighbourhood. Similarly, I have put even more of a focus on avoiding rubbish in the first place and reinforced my initial drive to keep it to a limit. As we all know, those good intentions tend to slip over time, and the strike has been a welcome wakeup call to find better solutions.
Even without a bin strike at hand, why not take a good look at how you deal with rubbish? And while you are at it, consider how you can avoid bringing all that stuff into your home in the first place…
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Hi, my name is Tilo Flache. My current mission: help my clients declutter mind and space.
This blog contains pointers for your journey towards a happier living experience.