Infographic photo credit: www.mnn.com
WARNING: This post is mostly a rant.. and a cry for help.
I’ve claimed before that I’m less needy now that we live tiny, which I still believe is true. I’m also more stubborn. I refuse to be irresponsible with my trash on the road. I WANT to recycle. I have a second trash bin in my kitchen, which takes up valuable real-estate, just so that I can separate my recycling. And don’t get me started on composting… that’s another rant.
My second trash bin, the one specifically for recycling, fills up twice as quick as my landfill trash can. Once it’s full, I have to find a recycling center or a recycling bin to toss it in, which has been a challenge. I was flabbergasted to learn that the majority of campgrounds do NOT recycle. You’re a campground, aren’t you supposed to care about the environment?? Since I refuse to throw my recycling in the landfill dumpster, I’m forced to travel with my recycling, until I can dispose of it responsibly. Sometimes, it can be weeks before I find a convenient place to recycle. And in some areas, I’m unable to store the bags in the back of the truck because birds and bears will tear the bags apart! In these areas, I’m left with a choice: 1). Keep my bags of recycling inside the cab of the truck, which is a bit smelly, or 2). Store them inside the tiny house… which is a bit smelly and uninviting. Who wants to share their space with bags of recycling??
I often find myself scanning for blue bins. Scouring like a hawk for prey.
When I finally spy a target, I’m almost always disappointed to learn that they only accept SOME forms of recycling. I sigh, and begin the unsavory task of ripping open my recycling bags and sorting. This creates a huge mess! Perhaps I should have more bins? One for glass; one for plastic; one for aluminum; one for paper. My kitchen would be half kitchen / half recycling center! What’s a traveling gal to do??
I now refill my water bottle instead of purchasing a new one each time. I reuse glass jars for organizing my pantry. I use Yerdle to recycle my clothes and electronics. I’ve also tried to purchase items without plastic wrapping, but that’s not always easy. When you live on the road, you’re at the mercy of the local practices. If Wal-Mart is the only grocery store for fifty miles, you have to shop there, or starve.
I am stubborn. I carry my recycling with me. I sort through it. I get dirty and angry dealing with it. And, I’ll swim in it, if need be.
If we were all so stubborn, would things change?
Does anyone have a suggestion to ease my pain? I’d LOVE to hear your thoughts and stories of recycling on the road.
All the best,
– Smelly & Stubborn