Italians are HIPPIES?! Who knew?

OK… not quite your Grateful Dead listening, moccasin wearing, pot smoking, “make love-not war” type of hippies.  More of the modern-day “green” kind.  Which is a good thing.  But let me tell you something…


When we first moved here and were getting our run-down of the new rules of life, one of the first things we discovered was that everything gets recycled.  You’re likely saying, “what’s the big deal?  I recycle!”  Sure, we did too.  I was quite proud to carry my bottles, plastic and paper to the big blue bin next to the trash chute.  Our building actually changed from having to separate paper from plastic into one big bin to make it more convenient.  Now that’s the type of recycling I was used to.

But this… this is next-level recycling.  Thinking about throwing that banana peel away?  You’d better stop in your tracks!  Planning on throwing away that package your kids toy came in?  Stop right there!  You were planning on seperating the paper label from the plastic cover and removing it from the cardboard backing, right?!

You see, everything needs to be separated.  EVERYTHING.  And there is no such thing as “Tuesday trash night” to put your refuse on the street.  There is “glass night”.  And “paper night”.  And “compost night”, etc.  So, you’d better budget some time to take a trip to the curb nearly every night and nearly every morning.

Think you’ll circumvent the system by going to the dump?  Think again!  We only have to separate into five piles at home – at the dump, it’s over double that figure.

Being OCD by nature, I went and got fresh new trash bins to color-cordinate my refuse.  Little problem – the garbage men don’t like some of the bins I’ve selected and have twice taken my neighbors garbage while leaving mine.  I’ll be sure to get it right soon enough!

Bins shown below (from left to right) umido (compost), rifiuti solidi (garbage), plastica (plastic), carta (paper) and bottiglie (bottles).
My clean new bins

Oh yeah, you’ll notice different color bags.  Each type of trash also requires it’s own special bag.  Below is what happens when you make a mistake on bag or type of bin – they leave your trash curbside and you take your trash back upstairs to wait until the next time it goes out.

Some of the trash came back upstairs with me
This is what happens after a snowstorm and no garbage is picked up
So, I don’t mean to “one-up you” here – but if you think you’re doing your part for Mother Nature, think again!  We’re going GREEN over here in Italy.  Of course, I imagine that we’re giving it all back and more touring around in that big diesel SUV I’m borrowing from my in-laws!

One thought on “Italians are HIPPIES?! Who knew?”

  1. I gave Dom a hard time about that SUV. Not sure why you would want such a big car besides the amount of gas it burns, when streets are so narrow and parking is such a big issue in every town and village.

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