Monday, April 23, 2012

Clean Up Day

I'm sure there is an annual clean up day in many communities around the world.  But for those of you who, like I did, find this a  strange new idea... clean up day is a designated day where you can haul junk to the curb that doesn't fit your every week trash can and the municipality comes around with a big truck to gather it up and haul it away.

We have such a thing in Salt Lake City!

Each year, a few weeks ahead of time, the City mails an over-sized postcard telling us the date of pickup, when it's acceptable to start moving trash to the curb and a reminder of the rules for what can be in our junk piles.  The dates rotate through all of the neighborhoods so everyone has a chance sometime during every year between March and October (I think).  We never know until the postcard arrives if our clean up day will be early in the spring or late in the fall.

When I moved here from rural Southeast Idaho, it was my first experience with a clean up day and over the years I've observed this ritual with many different emotions.  First was curiosity; almost overwhelming curiosity.  Then came a sort of disgust that the same people could accumulate so much junk year after year.  Later, I felt a bit of satisfaction as I joined the many roving 'curb shoppers' and scored some lawn furniture, planters, canning bottles and an antique dining table.  Some years I've felt relief as I had an abundance of trash that needed to be hauled away.  Other times I've sat inside and watched in utter amusement as car after car stops out front to rifle through my trash in search of their treasures.  In fact I'm watching someone out there right now!

This is my contribution for Salt Lake's Spring Clean Up 2012.  There's some rubble from tearing down the old patio structure in the back, a few odd pieces of dry wall from some minor remodeling in the basement, carpet scraps from the downstairs bedroom and a broken picnic table.  Long gone are the old metal electrical box and a couple of lengths of pipe... those are the prizes for the curb shoppers as they can be scrapped for cash.

Today is the day the truck begins in my neighborhood.  Most years, my pile gets picked up on the first day.  I'm kind of hoping to be a little farther into the cycle this round because there's still junk I'd like to add to the pile.

And I will keeping adding to it until I see the City's trucks headed down my street!

1 comment:

Antique Dining Tables said...

I once found the best table ever in a hard rubbish pickup in my local area. I wish my city council organised more of them!