I stand corrected (trash collection)

I usually let loose dogs Benji and Mocha (aka Choco Mocha Latte) to run with Syd and Gundy’s five dogs in the Villar Wilderness,1 but Benji’s still limping a bit from the accident, so I like to give him rest days. Which means walking each individually a few bocks around here on a leash while the other, forced to stay home, howls and cries and whimpers incessantly. Hard for Susan, and hardly a rest for me: after ten minutes, Benji finally ceases to be the equivalent of trying to restrain a runaway garden tractor. Mocha, on the other hand, is like a turbocharged small garden tractor with defective steering: slightly less forceful, but constant veering from left to right, making choking noises, and of course the classic back-right/cross/forward left wrap-the-walk-human-in-the-leash maneuver. Exactly what Benji did, but not something he taught Mocha. I thik that move is more instinctual.

Point is, I took them different directions, carefully selected rocks in pockets for the occasional loose and aggressive (if only playfully) neighborhood dog.

So I saw new stuff. After commenting yesterday on how often the trash containers have been emptied, in contrast to the recycling containers, this:

overflowing waste bin, Atlántida Uruguay

While it is true that most of the “dumpsters” near us have been well serviced, obviously some haven’t . Another day for this one, a few blocks from here, and no doubt there will be bags on the ground, eagerly torn apart by dogs, cats, and comadrejas (possums).

May be there was extensive waste from a party (as in this post), but it doesn’t look like that. Seems like one “they” forgot about. Notice the sliver of white in the lower right – that brush is piled on top of a discarded refrigerator. Maybe that has something to do with it?

1 In case you’re new here, this refers to 100+ hectares of no-man’s land, sandy scrub brush, islands of pine forest, seasonal water holes, cow pasture, burnt eucalyptus trunks, sand roads used by horses and motos/quads, punctuated by inexplicable trash deposits I have documented often, all north of the Ruta Interbalnearia in Villa Argentina.

Funny thing happened at the recycling bin

I don’t recall when “they” introduced the recycling bins, probably 2012 or so. I see no particular pattern in emptying them; frequently, as recently, they become so overfilled that I simply throw recyclables in the trash bins. I’m sure “they” still go through trash as I documented in a post on 24 March 2012, which appears to have disappeared (500: internal error – bleh).

Where Syd and Gundy live, “they” have done away with the corner “dumpsters” and assigned each house two wheeled containers. One day a week “they” pick up trash, another day recyclables. I question the logic and economics , but no one is asking my opinion (especially the guy who sold the town council 1,000 wheeled household containers).

recycling containers, Atlántida Uruguay

After the last recyclables overflow event, these signs appeared in the bin near us: “Please only recyclables. No trash!”

sign on recyclables bin, Atlántida, Uruguay

Which raises a question: when the recycling bins are consistently overflowing and the trash bin nearby is not, what exactly transpired to evoke this response?

A further question to ask is what Ave Fenix, an organization addressing drug addiction, has to do with the recycling program?

I guess the answer is, it’s a different Ave Fenix. (Ave Fénix=Phoenix.)

Unrelated, I also learned today (via an article from 2014) that given RGB images for print projects, best not to convert them to CMYK before placing in InDesign documents. Fascinating, no?

For these two revelations, you are – from the bottom of my heart – most welcome.



Tug of war

Remember that cue little new puppy in December?

Tug of war
01 December 2017


Revisiting a pet peeve

Yes, I have written about this before: here and here (with a cute catch at the end of the latter).

Retrograde Uruguay supermarket checkout

Once again, we’re forced to leave a wide space between us and the customer before, because the cashier is convinced the only function of the “next customer” divider bar is its use as a switch to stop the conveyor belt.

Even after eight plus years here, I still find this incredible.

Situational awareness (lack thereof)

I was talking with a woman in the feria (street market) yesterday, who wanted to know where I was from and what I thought of Uruguay. It’s very tranquilo, she said, a common theme and indeed what made the country so attractive to us, especially after the noise and chaos of Mexico.

But there’s a flip side to that tranqui attitude, which is a lack of situational awareness. People block the entrance and exit of the supermarket as they stop to chat, completely unaware of anyone else; drivers at speed follow the car before them at a distance of 1/2 second, guaranteeing catastrophe should anything unexpected occur; pedestrians step into the street and then look to see if there might be approaching traffic.

And I don’t know if this is uniquely Uruguayan — I can imagine it’s more a Latin American thing — there are the supermarket aisles. More than once I’ve tempted to tap the shoulder of a Tienda Inglesa employee stocking shelves, and point out that if they moved their shopping cart just 20 cm this way they could block the entire aisle, instead of just 75% of it. But alas, sarcasm is not a thing here.

Here’s a recent gem.


A store employee has lost interest in stocking shelves, and despite the wide aisles of Tienda Inglesa (unlike Disco), manages to leave the shopping cart in exactly the place where it can maximally obstruct traffic. The fact that the store was relatively empty at the time might have influenced this “thinking.”

But more likely, there was simply no thinking at all. Just wandered off to some other task, or mate break, or ….