Thursday, July 24, 2008

Trash twice, recycling once and a lot less gasoline

Not a manifesto on what the government needs to do (or not do) to solve the "crisis at the pumps" as the media has titled it.

rather an oddity about life here in Northern Virginia, which, according to callers on the Kojo Nnamdi show last week, is a completely separate entity from the rest of Virginia, I am learning.

All trash collection here is privatized. Odd. There are companies competing for your trash business. The result is that they pick up trash two times a week and recycling once a week. Lawn and yard debris is on an entirely different day. At least the company we're with now picks up recycling the same day as trash (Trash is Monday and Thursday, recycling is just Thursday). The other company, who wanted $150/quarter for service, was "trash on Monday and Thursday, recycling on Wednesday." Marc's job just got infinitely harder, he says.

One of the perks of being here is that I am definitely driving less. Whereas in Dayton I used to fill up the minivan every six days or so, I can now go two weeks between heart attacks at the pump. No treks into Cincy to see my friends (sniff, sniff), and the kids go to school and camp right around the corner, instead of 15 minutes away. Of course I'm probably spending the difference on public transport but at least I'm saving the environment (or something).

Tuesday I met a friend in DC proper for lunch at Les Halles. Yum. Adult conversation and good food that I didn't have to prepare. It wasn't cheap but nothing is here. Then we headed over to the Newseum for a couple of hours to gaze on artifacts and headlines of bygone times, a twisted news antenna from the top of one of the WTC towers, a car that was blown up with a journalist inside and other random things that were decisively "historical." I wanted to spend a lot more time there, but unfortunately, had to get back. It was a $20 admission ticket--one of the only DC museums that isn't free--which I thought was expensive, even by DC's standards. I can become a member for $75 but as I would probably have to go alone, I'm not sure about that one. Entertainment dollars (?) can be finicky.

So while I didn't drive into the District, I shelled out $4 in quarters for on-street parking at the metro station and $6.50 for a round-trip metro ticket. That would buy me two to two-and-a-half gallons of gas, which was probably less that it would have taken to get into DC. But then there's the problem of parking. I will, at some point, figure all this out.

What preoccupation. I must go read, edit and proof--not my own stuff, unfortunately. That languishes in the drawer, waiting for me to rediscover it.


Legion said...

Okay, I read every single on of your posts (I have a news reader that checks for updates everyday) but how in the freakin' heck did I miss the fact that you moved to farggin' Virginia?

Krista actually has friends up there that we've gone to visit. Now I can make an excuse to see you!

Applecart T. said...

st. louis county has that same trash stupidity. it means there's a truck on the block, noisy, diesel, etc., every day. one "good" thing about living in the city limits proper is that one gets to have one trash and recycling and brush pick up provider, generally for "free." there are limits, of course, but a household of two has no trouble with them.