This week there is an inorganic rubbish collection in our neighbourhood. It is the first one that I have ever experienced, and what an experience it is! It all started about a month ago when the flier came out in the mail. It explained that the collection would start today so could people put all their stuff on the grass verge outside their house this weekend.

Straight away, piles of the most unimaginable junk started accumulating on the streets. The neighbourhood started to look like a ghetto. That set off a sort of frenzy of scavenging. Strange little trucks started appearing all over the place. They would pull up beside a pile of junk, a couple of people would jump out, something resembling a kind of mini tornado would occur, and then the truck would drive off, leaving a significantly dessimated pile behind.

Some of the less organised scavengers wouldn’t have trucks. They would be on foot, with wheelbarrows or supermarket trolleys. You could see them making slow progress down the streets with ridiculously balanced loads, like circus clowns.

What stuns me the most is the sheer volume of crap that people seem to have. I swear there are piles outside some houses that appear to be larger than the houses themselves. One place up our street has thrown out a fridge, a lounge suite and three beds. What the hell?

In a kind of mean spirited way, I decided to foil the scavengers by waiting until late last night to put out our stuff. We didn’t really have much. A couple of old planter boxes, some metal storage units and some scraps of corrugated iron. Under cover of darkness Shaun and I (ably assisted by the cats) dragged everything onto the verge. We went inside and within 10 minutes the scavengers were out there. They must hide up lamp posts keeping watch.

What the hell do they do with all the crap they collect? Hide it under their houses until the next collection?


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