Community Trash Swap

It’s my favourite time of year in the municipal council calendar – hard rubbish collection.

Once a year, you and your neighbours put your accumulated ‘hard rubbish’ out on the footpath for the council to collect. These are all the items that are too big to put out in the regular weekly trash collection.

You put it out on a weekend. Then the trucks come round during the following week to take it away. So from Sunday evening onwards, at least for the next two or three days, there is a treasure trove of trash out in the streets. That’s when people go scavenging. And there is some great stuff. Last year I needed a couple of loudspeakers for the band’s PA. In two hours I picked up eight.

This year, I put out our old TV set, the old gas wall furnace that we’d had replaced, three old canvas backed “director” chairs, an eight-inch square of steel plate that used to cover part of the storm water drain and the two front panels from a pair of loadspeakers I’d scrounged in last year’s haul.

The TV went in the first hour. By Wednesday, eveything had gone except for the speaker panels, even the bit of metal. And I’d picked up a large hard-shell suit case, perfect for my busking drum set.

So you put out your surplus stuff for others to help themselves, and you go and liberate stuff that other people no longer want. This is socialism at work.

Re-use, re-pair and recycling at work, reducing landfill and council workload. A win-win situation all around. I love it.

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