Wednesday, June 16, 2004

The Take It Or Leave It

We have a recycling center here on Lopez Island. We call it The Take It Or Leave It and we call it Neals' Mall.
Neal is the guy who works for the county waste department and he runs everything at the dump. He is very tall, thin, has a really long beard and long hair, very quiet, soft spoken, wears glasses, and always has a pair of overalls on. We love Neal!!!
A part of our very cool dump is the recycling center. We are way into recycling here! And a part of the recycling center is The Take It Or Leave It.
The Take It Or Leave It is housed in a huge shed closed on three sides and open the whole width of one side. Most stuff is put into categories, by whoever brings it in and by volunteers when the dump is closed. We have clothes: baby's', children's', women's', men's', tons of jeans, coats, dresses, shoes, boots. You name it, we don't take it to the thrift shop we take it to the dump! We don't buy things at the thrift shop, we go to the dump!
We have books, bikes, vacuum cleaners, lawn mowers, pots, pans, games, dishes, old fencing, couches, chairs, anything and everything.
My husband loves to go there every Sat., Sun., and Wed. He's sometimes gone for hours. Sorting, waiting for someone else to bring in a load, chatting with friends. It's his coffee clutch. Everyone at the dump knows Michael. He's a true scavenger. He keeps a list on our desk of things that he wants to have appear at the dump. There are many like him on Lopez. They have a friendly competitiveness between them...they are always wanting to be the first person there when the dump opens and the last person there when it closes.
Sometimes Michael will go two or three times a day to see what has been brought in.
Today I was suppose to meet Michael at The Take Or Leave It at noon when it opened to pick up something he saw on Sunday but couldn't fit it in the car. I waited, he was late. While waiting I picked up 5 pairs of jeans for Xan to try on. Someone came in with a Uhaul and unloaded a bunch of stuff from their house that they just sold. From them I got two shucking knives, a silver ladle (I even went to them to make sure that they wanted to give it away. They did. Yay me!), a pair of scissors, a silver serving spoon and two boxes of ziploc storage bags. Oh, and a really good small knife.
Michael just walked in the door from his second round of recycling. He brought home Artie some professional hair dyeing capes and glitter for Xan.
Life is full of stuff. I love our Take It Or Leave It. We collect stuff and we leave it for someone else to collect. Stuff! Wonderful, wonderful stuff!!!

1 comment:

Jane_hates_Dick said...

Sounds fabulous. What a great concept.