Saturday, March 2, 2013

Saturday encore ~ The only downside to living in the middle of nowhere

Living in the middle of nowhere is a choice I've made, and I have no regrets. At all. That is not to say I haven't made sacrifices: 
Domino's doesn't deliver, the long and winding dirt road to the highway has put a crimp in my social life, 
and a quick trip to the grocery store takes no less than three hours. These are minor inconveniences 
that I've traded off for the ability to live where my animals and I can roam to our hearts' content.

In the six and half years I've lived out here, I've encountered only one downside, 
and I've yet to figure out a way around it. 

We're talking trash.

Smooch: We're not in Kansas anymore, are we?
Me: No, hon'. We're at the dump.

What does one do with one's trash when one lives in the middle of nowhere?
Particularly when one has a respect for the environment, a conscience, and an innate fear of brush fires?

One sits in line at the dump every eighth Saturday or so or until such time
one's garage can no longer accommodate one more bursting Hefty bag of garbage.

Smooch: Maybe next time we should bring a picnic lunch to pass the time.

Me: Are they afraid of someone stealing the trash?

Smooch: This place is a real eye-opener. Who knew people could have so much trash?

Typically, Smooch and I sit in line for no less than a half hour, behind truck after truck laden with trash. 
We are an anomaly here at the dump – we are females. In the umpteen-many times we have been here, 
we have never seen another female dumping trash. It must be a husband thing.

Living by oneself in the middle of nowhere might be considered risky by some. 
But believe me when I say that nothing is as risky as going to this dump. 
Aside from the creepy, leering males who act as if they have never encountered 
a female before, let alone one dumping her own trash, there is the Pit of Doom.

Here I am being directed to back up my truck to the knee-high great divide, the only barrier between myself and the Pit of Doom – 
a row of open containers 10 to 20 feet below ground level depending upon their level of fullness – into which I will toss my trash. 
I once asked one of the not-as-creepy, leering trash directors if anyone had ever fallen into the Pit of Doom. 
He said, "Happens all the time." Swell. No wonder why I've never seen any other females here. 
They've all met their fate in the Pit of Doom. Seriously? Why hasn't 60 Minutes been here investigating? 
If I fail to post on any given Sunday, look for me in the Pit of Doom.

Smooch: Mom, it's our turn. Stop taking pictures and drive so we can get the hell out of here.

Smooch and I hate going to the dump. It's bad for our health. We each gain weight on the way home 
because we reward ourselves with ice cream at the Sonic drive-through for having endured the ordeal.

Then we get close to the ranch and see our friends gathered around to welcome us home...

...and going to the dump doesn't seem too bad.


  1. What do the neighbors do? My friend Cindy lives on a ranch alone with seven dogs and 5 cats and she shares the garbage collection costs with the neighbors about 5 miles away. That way it doesn't collect in the barn and no contending with leering males. At least they still leer which is awful but they don't do that to me anymore....I got too old and with grey hair, leering at me is just not cool especially in the company of their friends. Ha!
    Best always,

  2. I'm hoping the guy in the blue truck doesn't have dead bodies in those oil barrels. We had one of those at our old county dump with no lip to stop vehicles and no one to direct us in backing up. It was about a 20-foot drop onto a concrete floor of a warehouse. While you were throwing things out over the edge, a bulldozer would push it all into a pile. One time I was throwing something heavy over the edge and almost forgot to let go. I lost my balance and almost flew into the pit with my garbage right when the bulldozer was aimed at my stuff.

  3. I think I would place a classified ad seeking someone who would collect your trash, say, at the highway...or someplace beyond where you actually live (wouldn't want them to know), but not as far as the dump. Surely there is a niche market here for some enterprising young sprout to do collections for people who don't have city services?

  4. I need an big bowl of icecream just reading this post eh ;-)

  5. i had never thought about the trash problem you would have.. since twice a week they drive to my driveway and pick up... no wonder you wait 8 weeks to go... the thing is if you did not have to do this i would not be enjoying The Story... great story...and hubby walked by and saw Smooch and said beautiful dog and she is

  6. even in town when I have to go to the landfill instead of curbside pick-up, I hate the back up situation. I always feel like this may not be such a good idea, but it is necessary. I'm with Sandra on no leering. With all the grey hair, sometimes you become invisible in those icky situations....okay by me. Smooch and you make a great team and deserve a treat after a taxing job like that. Smooch is so intense looking guarding her Mom. Good girl.

  7. Thank you so much for your whimsey and great animal antics .. your posts are better than my 1st cup of coffee in the morning!

    I love the animal hijanks (sp?)and all the things you tackle, animals and otherwise (spiders and house issues).

    You're an inspiration for the rest of us single women who live with and love animals and are doing it on our own!


  8. Seems like you could get the smallest size dumpster and have them come out every other month instead?
    Knowing you as well as I do (heh, heh), I'm sure you recycle lots, although it sounds like you would be adverse to burning the burnables. But with a burn barrel (only for paper trash) and recycling of aluminum, glass, plastics, and magazines/catalogs, we (two) manage to keep our pickup to once a month. Maybe once a year I take a pickup load of bigger stuff (old fencing, building material scraps, major clean-up dregs) to the dump. I tend to feel a little superior to the neighbors who put out 2 and 3 cans weekly...

  9. Michelle from BC3/2/13, 11:54 AM

    You're right about never seeing any other females at the dump. My Hubby builds kitchens and has to make regular trips there and I sometime go for a ride ... Starbucks is always involved. When I get out to help him the other dumpers ( all men ) just stare like I'm an alien. I mentioned to Hubby about my concern, he said I'm being paranoid ...... I think not and now you have confirmed it!

  10. I've never been to the dump and don't think I'm missing out. Sonic and the scenic drive home might erase the leering thirty minute wait. I would love to have a welcome committee like yours.

  11. You are so so so funny! the way you go through things, the way you think. Did you ever contemplate writing a book? In the Middle of Nowhere would be a nice title!

  12. take 'em a 6pk of beer. they WILL remember and stop learing. I think it's a thing here in New Mexico. Most of the men that lear at the dumps I've been too get lots friendlier when they can slug down a brewski.
    gotta love the welcome home committee tho.
    peace n abundance,
    ps give it to the guys backing you up, not the gate keeper.

  13. We go to the dump once a month. Well, I don't, hubs does. About 12miles one way. I just asked him the other day if they had any good junk at the dump, like you know, anything rustic, collectible? He looked at me like I was an alien asking if there was a spaceship available out at the dump. Geez, I know of one person that loves the dump. My aunt who lives in Tennessee. She has a beautiful collection of vintage findings like old china, an old coca cola ice chest...I guess this alien will forgo even chancing a dump ride.

  14. Is your dump open during the week? We go on weekdays and there's never a line.
    Burn barrels are not a hazard if you keep the fire small, cover with a grate and keep a hose nearby in case of sparks. You have enough acreage that you could just spread the ashes once they've cooled. They might even help the soil.