My House is Clean! Also, Swans…

I’m a lazy person at the best of times, so when it comes to cleaning my place, I tend to stave off the inevitable vacuum and trash collection as long as possible. In SA even ONE black garbage bag could sit for a week or two before becoming ripe enough to warrant house-eviction. And even then, thanks to the frustratingly anal garbage collectors in Melville, my brother and I would often be left with trash bags piling up in our non-regulation bin as the municipality’s finest drove past our overflowing garbage pile week after week.

In Sarufutsu, it’s a little more… complicated. Because Japan loves to recycle everything, I have six different coloured and texted trash bags for different things. Pink is for burnables, green for milk cartons, yellow for beer cans, white for PET plastic bottles (which is basically every plastic bottle in Japan), blue for glass bottles, etc etc. You get the idea! What’s more, things need to be completely disassembled for collection. Meaning my now-empty bottle of orange juice, for example, must have the lid and wrapper removed and placed in the pink bag, the bottle rinsed out and thusly placed in the white one (with brown writing. The white bags with green writing are for chemicals.)

So cleanup in my tiny apartment is a pain, but today I managed to successfully remove no less than six bags of cans, bottles, pink miscellaneous trash and some others odds and ends. And then vacuuming and so on. Oi vei! Completely mundane, but eh, it’s worth mentioning. Recycle all one’s trash so that one can feel good about whale harpooning and so forth I’d imagine.

The long weekend was also spent travelling with some local teachers to the nearby lake – now frozen over – to see the several hundred million swans that migrate there. Much like the lake in Wakkanai, only larger, the swans were less interested in the people and more on staying warm. Clearly our feathered friends had more common sense than us tourists flocking there.

On the drive back I took some shortcuts past one of the elementary schools I visit and encountered some extraordinarily slippery roads. More so than normal for the winter spell, even my precious Rav 4 was sliding all over the show. Thankfully ABS brakes and corrective steering saved the day and I did not wind up in a ditch on the side of the road, forced to gnaw off my arm to stave off starvation in the backroads of snowed-under Hokkaido. Or something…

Here are my pictures of the week, enjoy!

Written by admin in: Things Japanese |

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