Note 23…Spring Flowers and A Mixed Bag of Waffle…Plastic not Acceptable…

It’s funny how people chat about the weather and the seasons and the time of year.

Lower Ash Farm Flowers

Beautiful Spring Flowers at Higher Ash Farm. A public footpath goes right through the farmyard…how lovely to see this display for walkers to appreciate. 

“Clocks will soon be going forward,” says one. “Can’t wait for the lighter evenings.” says another. “Have you seen all the Spring flower out? They’re amazing. Makes one feel good.”

Yes, it does make you feel good to see the daffodils, primroses, snowdrops in the hedgerows and in the gardens too. I’m loving England right now. I’m missing the warmer days that are probably around in Italy at the moment but there’s nothing like an English Spring day when  sun comes out.

If only everybody could love the countryside as I do and please stop throwing rubbish out of windows or deliberately dropping waste paper or litter out of their pockets onto the road. There is much publicity at the moment about the plastic being dumped into our seas and oceans but what about the stuff that is strewn everywhere. This habit of chucking stuff out isn’t confined to the countryside, the towns and cities are as bad. The only difference is there is perhaps more wildlife in country areas than urban, who could be affected by the crap people dispose of in any way they wish.

I have been collecting from the side of the road but sometimes I can’t reach a plastic cup or can when it’s been chucked out of a lorry window because it’s too high for me to reach.

Why do we have we need to use so much plastic? Why can’t we go back to paper bags for food and glass bottles for drinks. I particularly hate the fast food containers, those yellow polystyrene burger boxes and massive plastic beakers with lids and plastic straws through a hole in the top.

I hate these containers 

When I was younger, I used to love it in the American films when people went to the grocery store they carried it all home in a brown paper bag which they held in their arms. I thought that looked so cool. Now, everyone is laden down with several plastic carrier bags. Even me! I try to remember to take my ‘bag for life’ into the shop with me but so often I forget them and leave them in the car.

woman with shopping bag copy

NEW RESOLUTION – If I forget the bags I will put everything back in the trolley or the basket, take it to the car and pack it there.

Please can we go back to wrapping the Fish and Chips in Newspaper. Return to glass bottles that you pay a deposit for and then return. Food that you can buy and wrap up in paper, not pre-wrapped in, impossible-to-open, hard plastic. That goes for other commodities too, practically everything you purchase is impenetrably packed, in a completely sealed unit that you need some implement not yet invented to release the said article before it can be used…phew!

Oh…I’ve only just started on this…I feel a few bullet points coming on…

  1. Why do many magazines have to be put into clear plastic bags?
  2.  What’s the point of screws and nails being sold in packets of 50 or 100, bring back the old hardware shops.
  3. Ban take-away foods – no – on second thoughts just ban the ghastly packaging.
  4. Ban all plastic packaging
  5. Ban plastic plates, knives and forks…who needs them anyway?
  6. What’s wrong with using proper cutlery and crockery when you go out for a picnic? As a matter of fact the Italians are the worst culprits, they will serve up a complete meal on a plastic plates; pasta, meat and finishing with desserts. That’s three plastic plates for every person attending, tut tut.
  7. (I suppose we could go back to paper plates).
  8. Why is that we cannot put black plastic containers in the recycling bin? (in West Dorset that is).
  9. Ban mega stores, bring back rural bus routes, village shops and town-centre shopping…

Okay, I’m going off the point now. Time to stop waffling and have a cup of tea. I’ll be moaning about dog walkers next time…

Thoughts on Recycling…

A couple of weeks ago here in Petritoli the system of collecting the rubbish changed. When we arrived here there was no door-to -door rubbish collection but there were large bins located in several areas in the town and also on roadsides, I like that idea. There were usually four bins at each site, 1. General rubbish. 2. Glass. 3 Plastic and 4. Paper/card. There was no bin for organic waste and nothing for tin.

The reason I particularly liked the system was because back in the UK the bins were collected every 2 weeks and I would often forget to put them out. The stinky black bag would be stuck outside for another two weeks whereas here, I could take my rubbish and recycling to the bins everyday if I wished and not have them hanging around at all.

Well, they (whoever they are) decided we should have a door-to-door collection in Petritoli. They’ve given us a calendar so that we can see which day what is collected…and they’ve given us lots of literature so that we [the public] can understand exactly what we put in which bin…or can we? The scheme has been running since the 1st October 2014 and I wouldn’t say it was complete failure but neither would I suggest a magnificent success.

Calendar

Calendar

The Calendar for example; it’s clear that Monday is the day for Organic waste to be on the step, only they don’t really mean Monday they mean you have to put it out on Sunday evening for it to be collected between 10pm Sunday night and 6 am Monday morning. So, I’ve got that now, only made the mistake the first time. Second time it was there, outside my door to be collected during the correct hours but…they didn’t collect it because they don’t really mean door to door they mean somewhere in a prominent place in a main thoroughfare. So I’ve got that now…third time lucky.

Paper and plastic are collected in the same way, during the night, so the day stated on the calendar means put it out the day before. They do not collect glass or tin but they have put, in various areas of the town, big yellow bins specifically for these two items but…not everyone seems to have understood that so now other rogue items are finding their way into the yellow bins!

bags

The recycling public area (the tip) is now open every Wednesday pm and Saturday morning, this is where you take anything that you’ve forgotten to put out and also other items that cannot be categorised and placed in designated colour coded plastic bags, brown paper bags or bins. Things like, let me see, oh yes, batteries, small and large electronic items, fridges, microwaves etc.,

The biggest eye opener to me is how much plastic we use as a society. I cannot believe it. I realised that the use was widespread but when I began to collect every single piece of plastic; wrapping, cartons, trays, bottles, bags, pizza containers and take-away containers…it is HORRIFIC! Why do we not use more glass? When I was a child we had glass milk bottles, glass fizzy drinks bottles, glass everything and you could take it back to the shop and get a few pence deposit returned. Why can’t we do this now? Why does all our food have to be wrapped in cling film? Also, pieces of cheese, ham or vegetables are place on a piece of polystyrene and then covered with cling film. Other food is vacuum packed in plastic. In all electronic stores, items are sealed in hard plastic which is often impossible to remove. I’m sure you all know exactly what I mean. We are living in a pre-packed plastic world.

I embrace the idea of recycling but it can only work if everyone gets involved.
I would like to know what happens after we have recycled because a little bird told me that often, it’s sold on and then…wait for it…then… it gets sold on again and possibly ends up in India and is placed in a big landfill, all materials back together again! I seriously hope this isn’t true but the cynical side of me thinks there is a strong possibility that this happens.