Setting up a new kitchen has taught me many things. It takes longer than you think. It is more complicated than it first appears, especially when you plan to cater for events. Brand new stainless steel panelling comes wrapped in a protective plastic film. The plastic film needs to be removed before you can start cooking.
Plastic film is bulky and creates a lot of rubbish.
Too much for the new bins that just got delivered.
I offered to assist in this situation by taking a large bag of rubbish home from the kitchen to deposit in our bin. It wouldn't fit in my bin either, and so it sat forlornly round the side of my house.
The other day it was garbage truck day. I was just about to walk the junior recipe testers to school when the garbage truck rolled through our street. In that moment, what I assumed to be a brilliant idea struck me. I grabbed the rubbish bag, instructed the juniors to wait at the top of the driveway and dashed across the road in front of the garbage truck.
Once our neighbour's bin was emptied I signalled wildly to the truck driver that I had another bag of rubbish and could he possibly take it. Not realising just how noisy a garbage truck is, I employed my best sign language. Through various arm waving I indicated to the driver that I would hold the rubbish bag out for him to extend the clamping arm things and lift it into the truck.
He shook his head.
On hindsight, this was probably wise. I was not wearing particularly loose sleeves, but I imagine it would be quite a thing to explain at the depot if I had gotten tangled up in the clamping arm things and flung aloft into the truck.
He wound down his window. "Throw it in," he instructed.
I looked up at the truck. "Um..." I responded.
"Just throw it in." He was starting to sound impatient.
I looked up at the truck again. I'm not sure I had ever previously considered the size of a garbage truck. I clutched the bag of rubbish and took a back swing.
I have now learned that I might have had more success had I tried to throw the rubbish bag over our house. Launching a bag of rubbish into the opening of a garbage truck is like trying to throw it onto a balcony.
On the third floor.
The bag did not sail into the rubbish receptacle in the top of the garbage truck. It hooked itself on the side. And tore. And opened, sprinkling rubbish into our neigbour's driveway. There was a particularly awkward moment when I had to reach up to try and disentangle my bag of rubbish from the side of the truck and pull it down.
This is when I learned that the bag didn't just have protective plastic coating in it. Turns out there was a pile of other stuff too. Pulling the bag down served to spread yet more rubbish across the general vicinity.
With some panic that the truck might just drive off, I got down on my knees and started scraping it up with my hands.
By this stage the driver was wondering what he had done to deserve this scenario on his morning run. I am, however, exceedingly grateful to him: he did hop out to help. We loaded the rubbish into the neighbour's, now empty, bin. The driver hopped back in to operate the clamping arm things.
Setting up a new kitchen has taught me that the best way to get rubbish into a garbage truck is via a rubbish bin.
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