Plastic plague. Trash-careless people.

My life would go on much faster if people in my neighbourhood would be more eco-educated or maybe had a warmer heart towards nature. I have to spend much time collecting trash from my forest and from the roadsides. My road from my country place to town goes at the lake Alūksne, so it is a nice environment, or at least it could be, if not so many package trash. There are other issues as well.


We have those color boxes, but not all people use it. Among those who use it are those who abuse it. In the package glass green box people often throw window glass and light bulbs, too. There is quicksilver bulb in the photo. If they make new glass out of this box it might contain quicksilver which is not good for consumers. Most likely is that they will discard this collection, which means the work of people is in vain.

Many don’t bother themselves by having more than one trashcan at home. So often I take package from the unrecyclable material boxes and put it in the right places. Once I even got me a dvb-t receiver, that can be sold for money to metal collectors. One man saw me doing this but he didn’t really understand what exactly am I doing, so he gave me his empty beer bottles, so that I could sell them. Yeah. Since it is a dirty job, I prefer to have my worst clothes on. That also gives people a nice impression.

Yellow box is for plastic. Despite there is this box, I still find more and more plastic bottles in the forest and lakeside. Of course, it is usually always full. They empty it once a month. The smartest guys place bags with their plastic near it and it is fine. The reason the box is filled quickly is that people don’t get the difference between PET, PP, PVC and other plastic. It is only PET and HDPE that is needed (in Latvia, but there are countries where they reuse many other kinds of plastic), but mostly all other kinds of plastic go there. According to some article, there are people who even put there used syringes.

So I collect trash as if I were a bum. However bums don’t collect it much here, because they are pretty much satisfied with state and municipality financial support, which they use to buy drinks. So basically we know one of the source of all that trash. I may not have any support from the government. I own land and forest, so I’m kind of rich, because I can always sell it first and get money that way. Collecting these bottles will not give much money however. One bottle is 5 cents so it is all days work to earn a sandwich that way. I do it only not to be irritated by seeing these things on my way. People in the cars are low seated, so they basically don’t see the world at a close distance. I am high on the bike and I see every little thing around.

I must remove glass bottles anyway. In summer they cut grass at the road sides. They use a machine, but never gather glass bottles before that. They smash them with the cutter. Pieces are left there as a surprise for barefoot walking fans and to give more profit for tire producers and sellers.

Instead of 30 minutes of travel I have from 40 to 50 then.


I wonder what is this strange giant insect. It is some 3 cm in length. Once it sat down on my chest as I was riding. I almost fell down from the bike in surprise, and there were cars passing by. It could be some mutant because of all the trash in the area I think.


These are my “horses”. The one to the left is already used up. Pedal brakes don’t function anymore. I got a warning from the road police because I still rode it. Next time they shall ask for the money.

The best way to deal with trash is not to create it. Recycling is very much an art already because of the variety of materials used.


About Pavels Melnis

Independent ecology activist, family farmer, gardener and forestkeeper. Musician: violin, guitar, singing. Hobbies: traveling by bicycle, learning to play different music instruments - accordion, piano, recorder flute, harmonica, drums; languages, theology, prehistory, logbuilding, repairing and recycling. Religious. Ecological. Love all things ethnic and traditional.
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One Response to Plastic plague. Trash-careless people.

  1. Pingback: Support removal of plastic pollution and other trash in forests of Aluksne region in Latvia | Pavels Melnis

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