One of the charming things about living in modern America is that we don't have to worry about what happens to our trash. People just come and pick it up.
It isn't somewhere primitive like Naples, for goodness sake.
At least that is what probably happens in your neighborhood. In my little nutty corner of California, trash is more of an interactive sport than waste disposal.
We have three cans: trash, recyclables and green waste. Simple. Except that the recyclable cans, with their treasure trove of bottles and cans, have become revenue sources for scavengers. Starting about 4:30 a.m. on trash day, you can hear people rooting around in the recycling bins.
I'm not putting these people down, far from it. People who get up before dawn to scavenge through sharp-edged tin cans in search of bottles with a 5 cent redemption value have nothing but my respect. One of these scavengers is in a wheelchair and has a complicated cart divided into three sections by pieces of chicken wire. God bless him. Obviously a man with no health insurance, a great work ethic and creativity to boot. It sucks that he isn't on the city council instead of pushing his wheelchair from house to house, searching for aluminum cans.
The early risers are so efficient that I want to tell the people I see when I leave the house at 6:30 a.m. "What is wrong with you? Don't you know the good stuff is gone by 5?"
On the flip side are the scofflaws. I don't know who the hell they are, but if I catch them, there is going to be hell to pay. These are the people who don't want to pay for trash collection, but instead drive around as soon as the trash truck has come by, stuffing their garbage in recently emptied cans.
Last week my trash can was 75% full within 3 hours of the truck coming by. This I do not appreciate.
The good thing about living here is that you can leave pretty much anything out by the curb and it will disappear. So far I have rid myself of a 2-year-old living Christmas tree that was badly potbound, a used shower chair for the handicapped, a terribly thin large tamale pot, and a clothes washer that had a sign in 2 languages "Works but leaks a lot of water," all by putting them out near the street.
It is interesting, seeing the little ecosystem that has developed around my trash cans. I no longer thing of my trash as waste, but rather a work in progress.