Sunday, January 9, 2022

Trash Week(s)

1/5/22 Trash bins across the street that had waited all week
to be picked up. Maple Leaf neighborhood.
The snowfall began on Boxing Day, which was a Sunday. By Tuesday, Seattle utility customers had received notice that the regular trash and recycle pickup services would likely be delayed at least one day. The worst-case scenario was that service would be skipped entirely that week, but in that case, we would not be charged the usual fee for putting out an extra bag.

Our regular pickup day is Thursday. Neighbors who were either overly optimistic or uninformed put their bins out in the snow that morning as usual. Per the memo, we waited until Friday to put ours out, but our street was still as snow-covered as ever, so we didn’t have high expectations
that the trucks would come by. They didn’t.

We all left our bins out in the snow all weekend. By Monday, we figured the utilities would simply get back on their normal schedule, which means we wouldn’t expect them until Thursday. Optimists that we all are, however, everyone on our block simply left all the bins out, just in case they did come. The good news: The temperature stayed near freezing the whole time, so at least the food waste didn’t smell bad.

1/8/22 Soggy cardboard
Nothing like several inches of snow to make you appreciate basic services that you otherwise take for granted. Somehow it was important to me to document this.

Follow-up: Although the landfill waste and yard waste were picked up, the recycling was not. A few days after I made the sketch above, our morning walk revealed that everyone’s recycle bins were overstuffed and overflowing with all the cardboard boxes that had contained holiday gifts. The heavy rain for several days before was already beginning to turn some of the cardboard into pulp.

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