Aug. 20th, 2010

tefnut: (cute)
I have taken that job as a recycling promoter. It turned out it would be a one-year renewable contract. It will be over in two months.

In the course of this year, I've learned the ins and outs of garbage removal. That was interesting, and at times infuriating -- for example, when people think that they can throw whatever they want in the streets, no matter how dangerous it is for the garbage man. Engine oil, anyone?

I've been following trucks, driving for 7 hours at low speed, changing gears every time they stopped to pick up a rubbish bag. In a car too big for me (couldn't see, crashed it three times). With manual gears. First time I really, really wished for an automatic. It killed my knees, my back, and my patience. Good thing I told them I couldn't sit without pain, at the interview. :\

When that task was over, we walked instead. Yes, for the whole seven hours. I didn't mind that, oh no. The two sunstrokes during the heatwaves, on the other hand, I could have done without.

I've worked with the oddest team ever. The clash of personalities definitely kept things fresh. For a change, I was *not* the most immature one. And it's not because I've suddenly grown up. No no.

I've talked with people about recycling. And then, about other things -- because, as I found out, people are lonely, and desperate for a conversation. Any conversation. They told us about the past, about their lives during the war. How worried they are about their children, who don't have a job / are still in school / are so young, but so street-smart already they don't look like kids any more.

Some people just barked at us. To my surprise, I'm not too bad at defusing a crisis. I can also brush the bad experience off quite easily. Looks like I've grown a thicker skin. And I know they, too, are eager for a conversation.

Some people, on the other hand, were sweet. They smiled. They made us a coffee, picked up some fruits growing in their garden. We joked together. One woman told that she was dying, told me her pains and her fears, and then that she was relieved to be able to talk about it to someone who wasn't bullshitting around the subject. I just listened. The experience was humbling.

Overall, an interesting year. :)

Next step: New Zealand, and then England. For good. At last.

September 2015

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