I have often been declared a radical by my partner. He doesn’t understand my motivation to recycle. Often I will see him trying to throw away something I would put into the recycling box, only to be grabbed by me, and placed in either the compost bag or the paper/plastic recycling bin. So when we moved to an apartment away from our home it was inevitable that I would attempt to maintain my environmental consciousness even in an apartment.
As fortune might have it, our apartment building had a paper/plastic recycling program. My challenge with biodegradable waste was another matter. Much to my partner’s horror, I decided to buy a tote box, and dispose of the daily refuse on the balcony. When the tote box was full, I planned, I would take the box down to my home that had a compost bin. There were a few factors I had not considered- the one and a half hour smell of compost on the drive to my home, the winter and freezing, and the insect friends that might infest the bin.
After the evolution of two bins, I decided it was time to take one of the bins to my house in another city. Preparations needed to be made: the fondly named ‘ick bin’ needed to be watered down before said partner would venture near. Anyone who saw me on the balcony might consider me a little eccentric- with my yellow dish gloves, hair tied back, and pants rolled up to my knees carrying various quantities of pitcher water and then dumping it over the bin.
After most of our wiggly friends were gone, I decided that it was a good idea to wrap the bin in a plastic bag- to avoid escapees. I would need help. Who knew that household waste weighed so much? Garbage bag and partner in hand, I return to number one ‘ick bin’ to wrap it up. This is accomplished only after approximately fifteen utterances of ‘gross’ from said unwilling partner the bag was at least half on the bin. After much persuasion, my partner would carry the ‘ick bin’ through the apartment, and to the hall. I would then take it down the elevator and to the car. The really interesting part was attempting to lift the bin high enough to fit into the trunk, all the while thinking, “Dear God, please don’t fall.”
After one and a half hours of driving (needless to say) with the windows down – I made it to my home. Again the perilous lifting of the bin out of the trunk. The smell was to say the least- unpleasant-even after the contents were placed ever so lovingly into the compost, the scent of ick was still clinging to the bin. Once more my eccentric costume of gloves, rolled up jeans and tied back hair. Luckily this time I at least had a garden hose. Three days later the scent was starting to dissipate.
When I get the courage, I will tackle bin number two. Let’s hope they fast track the green bins for apartments in Ottawa. I don’t know how much longer my resolve or relationship can handle my home made methods!