Garbage Pickup in the Azuero 3


Garbage at the Entrance to the Las Tablas Dump

Garbage at the Entrance to the Las Tablas Dump

It’s that time of year again!  Time to renew your garbage certificate.  It’s a bargain!

My garbage guys used to show up at about 5:30 am twice a week.  There were three of them, the driver and two pick-up guys.  Occasionally I felt the need to grumble about how picky they could be, only taking stuff if it was in a neatly tied off bag and neatly stacked within the confines of the metal garbage container on its stem in my front yard.  I had never seen one of these before I moved to Central America, so here is an exquisite photo for inquiring minds.

Garbage Thingie

Garbage Thingie

I can actually see why the pick-up guys would be fussy, though.  The truck, with its squeaky steering system and creaky brakes, has no facility for squashing things, or even for dumping things back out.  Indeed, it has mesh sides and the pickup guys are expected to fling the bags up over the sides and into it.  They pile it pretty high sometimes, probably so they won’t have to make so many trips to collect everyone’s trash.  There can be quite a lot of garbage on occasion, especially when the neighbors do their yards or after a holiday when the folks with vacation homes have been here to party.

Now the truck comes to my house at 4:30 am.  I hope that is because their route was changed, not because they have to start work earlier.

How much does it cost to have your garbage hauled away?  It depends where you live.  In Las Tablas Abajo I paid $9 for the year of 2012.  Where I am now, it was $12 for 2013.  A bargain at the price.  However, one must consider the dump.

There is some talk in the air about cleaning up the horrible situation at our dump.  That may cost us a few extra bucks each, I don’t know yet.  But I’m willing to pay it.  If you aren’t, have a look at the picture above.  Take a moment to meditate on what you are breathing when the wind is right and all that plastic is on fire.  Talk about something from a horror movie.  Talk about “breathing death.”


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