Suburban Pioneers

The Adventures and Misadventures of Homesteading in 21st-Century America

Lauren: Dumpster Diving February 12, 2014

I went dumpster diving today. And no, it was not really by choice.

It’s all because we cancelled our trash service. Between recycling, composting, and now, chickens, we don’t create very much trash, maybe a grocery bag a week. So it seemed ridiculous to pay $30 a month for the garbageman (or is sanitation engineer the politically correct term?) to come twice a week. Now we bring that one trash bag a week to the gas station when we fill up with gas, or we’ll go to the dump, or today I used the dumpster behind the butcher shop.

I threw my bag or two of trash into the dumpster . . . as well as my keys. And, of course they sunk to the bottom. I can’t believe this is really happening, I kept mumbling to myself. I’m sure I looked like a homeless person except for my clothes and my kids in the nearby car with huge smiles plastered across their faces. There’s not much cooler to E. than Mom climbing into the dumpster. It’s almost as fun as watching thirty minute YouTube videos of real garbage trucks going about their routes. Almost. I kept hoping I could just reach down and grab the keys, but no. I had to climb all. the. way. in.

I started to imagine what I would have to do if I couldn’t find them. The best I could come up with was going into the butcher shop and, after buying my ground beef and milk, ask them if anyone could help me find my keys. In the dumpster.

Once I got in and moved some bags and boxes, I saw them on the very bottom. Victory was mine. . .  in a loser-who-drops-their-keys-into-the-dumpster kind of way.

I am now seriously regretting not picking up the perfectly fine looking tomatoes I saw in there. Who knows? This might be a new thing.

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