Due to the “extreme” weather we have been having here in the southeast, meaning about 5 inches of snow, our garbage and recycling were not collected on our usual day. I was proactive and got the garbage to the curb yesterday afternoon, but not the recycling. I figured that I would have plenty of time this morning to carry up the recycling, because with my rocking new sober sleep schedule I have been up by 7 every day. Of course, not today.
I awoke at 8:15, and to my amazement, the trash and recycling trucks had already been through the neighborhood. Damn!
We live in a nosy neighborhood. Retired people who have nothing better to do than watch your house, and look at your trash while walking their dogs. One day while I was working in my yard a neighbor stopped by, and actually commented on the amount of wine bottles she saw in our weekly recycling. (I know, really, she must have already watched all of her grass grow and paint dry.)
This comment, of course, irritated me. So I began to rearrange the recycling in the bin before I took it to the curb. Wine bottles on the bottom, paper on the top. That was 6 years ago, when I was drinking in “moderation”.
As the years have passed, and my drinking has escalated, we added an additional bin. I told my husband and myself, it was due to all the junk mail, and medical magazines he get, and of course my goal of reducing our carbon footprint by recycling everything possible. We were the only people on our street who filled two bins each week.
Each time I finished off a bottle of wine, I would take it out to the bin, lift up all of the junk mail, and other assorted things, and plop the bottle at the bottom. I was hiding my drinking from my husband, and the dog walking neighbors. I was also trying to hide it from myself. If I didn’t have to see all those empties, they didn’t really exist. I think the only ones who were tricked were the dog walkers, they may look, and count, but they don’t dig through trash. (At least I hope not.)
We have always had two full recycling bins every week. Stacked tall next to the trash can. These bins contained my dirty little secret, all of the weeks empty wine bottles.
After carefully covering up the evidence, I would haul the two bins to the top of the driveway for pickup. The bins were always overflowing, and heavy. I knew when the recycling truck was in front of our house, I could hear all of the glass clanking into the truck. It sounded like we had hosted a party, every week.
This morning, when I realized I had missed the pick up, I went to the garage to see what I was going to have to do with all of the overflowing recycling during the next week.
Only one bin was full, it was tucked neatly inside of the empty one beneath it.
I never thought quitting drinking would be the real thing that would seriously reduce my carbon footprint.
Just one more reason to remain in my sober car. (Thank you for the car ride Belle.)