Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Garbage: The Continuing Saga

The above photo will probably only mean something to Donna and Tim, and maybe Valarie and Craig, who drive by frequently.

I have a few very unpleasant tasks that I've been putting off for awhile. I've discovered the best way to make myself accomplish these is to put myself in a position where I have no choice.

After the flood of fall 2011, I got a dumpster to deal with my lack of a trash transfer station. Previously, I had used three large black professional garbage "cans" which were parked right by the road in front of my barn. They were OK looking as far as garbage goes. On the outside, that is.

Despite being by the road, raccoons would visit them, and the smartest and strongest learned to get the tops off. Or the wind would blow the tops off, and the raccoons would visit. They found nothing worth eating, but would rip open the bags. Litter would spill into the bottom of the can, and of course the bag could not be lifted, because it would tear.

You can guess what I did about it. Nothing.

So over the course of time, two of the cans had the bottom third filled with ripped trash bags of old cat litter. As far as nasty trash goes, you would be surprised to learn that old cat litter isn't so long as it stays dry, which this did.

However, tipping these huge cans, removing the lovely waste, and rebagging it, was not high on my list of fun things to do. So there they sat.

Well, a friend of mine is getting married, and is having an outdoor wedding, and they needed garbage cans. Here were these very professional looking cans. So what did I do? I offered them up for use at the wedding.

This meant last weekend I rolled up my sleeves, broke out the leather gloves, and went to work. A few old sheets to dump the cans out on, and a couple of primal yells in order to muster strength enough to tip the cans on end, and a lot of sweat (it was hot last weekend) was all it took.

And a weedeater to clean up the area afterward. And a lot of soap and water and disinfectant for the cans. As well as a few days of sun to bake the cans.

The front of the barn looks much better without the line of trash cans. And that's one more nasty task out of my life. From now on, the trash company deals with my cat trash.

No one talks about how to throw stuff out when you think about getting involved in animal rescue. But it's a big issue.


  1. It is a huge and expensive issue. I've got to get going on an idea to create a tank for urine beneath a litter box rigged with a drain and using poly sand and rubber mulch as litter. I can pick off the poop from that and wash and re use the poly sand and rubber mulch. And dump the urine down the toilet is my big plan, saving me on garbage and litter costs, which are killer. Getting the prototype built has been the issue. No motivation and my usual daily pain has kept me from it so far. Plus the usual fumbling with figuring out how to do it, with inadequate supplies and tools.

  2. Job well done - looks GREAT!

  3. Well, we don't know what it looked like before, but it sure looks nice.