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Monday, April 18, 2011

Recycling and Residual Waste Woes

Thankfully a friend at Keesler who lived in Germany for a few years filled me in on this before I left...

...but the Germans are SERIOUS about recycling.  I mean... serious!  This trash can is about a quarter the size of the one we were given by housing at Keesler.  Now, we only had to take it out every two weeks or so... but still.  That is one small trash can!

I'm sure I'll understand more fully once we have a house and our landlord fills us in... but my understanding as of now is that recycling is unlimited and trash is VERY limited. 

They recycle almost everything!  It's great.  But a little confusing.  In our hotel there are three different trash cans and an instruction sheet. 

Even with the instructions, after talking to Tiffany I realized that we had been sorting way wrong.  So Jesse and I came back to the hotel and sorted through four days of trash.  What a romantic way to spend the last evening before work, huh? ;o) 

Well, it wasn't that bad because I had at least put the diapers in the right place! 

We have a can for paper (which is where I'm also putting cardboard cause I don't know any better?) and also a small can in the bathroom... which I'm just assuming is for residual waste.

Here's the "dual can".  The compartment to the left is for all the stuff you can recycle: plastics, cans, aluminum foil, etc.  

The tiny one to the right?  That's where all the "residual waste" goes.  Which, besides diapers and excluding batteries and electronics (not sure where those go, yet!), is where everything else goes.

We have a lot of biodegradable waste... banana peels, orange rinds, apple cores, cucumber peelings, food LJ doesn't want, etc.  I was actually pretty proud of myself because I remembered being told everyone has a compost for that kind of stuff (got confirmation from Tiffany) so I put it all in a baggie behind the trash.  My housekeeping friend didn't know what it was at first, but I said compost (?) and she got all excited and understood what I was doing... she seemed surprised I knew what to do! 

Two points for the dumb American trying to go above and beyond the call of recycling duties! :o)


  1. wow, what a crash course in composting/recycling. do they inform you as to consequences if you fail to recycle 'properly'?
    and did you guys get to check out that apt. yet?

  2. The only consequences we know of at the hotel would be that the housekeeper would have to sort it. And we didn't want to be "those Americans" who couldn't follow instructions and make someone's job harder :o)

    No on the apartment yet. Everyone is "off" on Sundays. So we're hoping sometime early this week!

  3. Wow, good for Germany... I'm just now realizing that I'll probably be in the same boat in Ithaca - that is, unless I wanna have us banished from city limits. ;) I'm excited to be surrounded by a more "green" mindset there. PJ, on the other hand, is worried that I'm gonna go all out 100%-hippie, like, well, you! ;) I can think of worse things. :)

  4. Oh yeah being a hippie is usually better for your wallet anyways (Dude, Jillian's Drawers!) and ALWAYS better for God's green Earth! ;o) Once you start you won't be able to stop! LOL

  5. Are you guys going to live right in the City?

  6. We would like to, if we can afford it... it is crazy expensive to live right in town. We'll probably have to pay almost double what we pay here for a comparable place, unless we go outside of downtown. But it would be nice to be in walking distance of stuff. Haha, both $-wise and green-wise. ;)

    (btw, my mind is currently being boggled by the fact that it adjusted the time you posted this to "your" time. I feel like there's some sci-fi time travel business at work here... haha)

  7. Oh - and the time *I* posted, too! Wow. Amazing.

  8. Oh wait... I didn't realize it was even going to make all of your posts in my time! Weird! So when you posted it was actually 10am for you?

  9. Yeah! If I remember correctly...

  10. It occurred to me long after I posted this that I could just look at the time here and then look at the time after I post, so - right now it's 9:07 am here. lol.

  11. Hehe you make me laugh. Yeah, that sounds exactly right because the time difference is 6 hours (you guys are "behind"). I'm still getting used to thinking about it... when my day's almost over, you're still in the middle! (Like, when the girls go down at 7pm it's only 1pm for you!) Makes skype with family tricky... since if they want to see the girls we basically have to do it on the weekends! Oh well!