I was joking a few days ago that one of my favorite things about living in China is that I can throw my trash out of the window. I love the convenience, sure, but what I really love is the sheer red-neck-ness of it. Finished a case of beer? Open the window and toss that box out! Filled a bag of garbage? Out it goes!
The only problem is, I'm not the only one who does it. Once I almost got hit by a giant watermelon rind someone chucked out from the 4th floor, and just the other day, my friend Kylie found a giant gold fish on the sidewalk, still twitching, that had somehow descended from a window above.
Amusing anectodes aside, the real problem is that nobody takes much care with trash, so trash is everywhere (though the groundskeepers do clean up several times a day, the sheer density of people here means that waste is constantly accumulating). I did not anticipate that one of the biggest irritations we would learn to live with, being new dog owners in China, is the abundance of trash on the ground. Pepper is in heaven snuffling about, finding disgusting/revolting/unsanitary/toxic/biological waste to eat.
And to be perfectly clear: when I toss trash, I am still tidy and mindful of my neighbors and neighborhood. I did not make the mess shown above!
We are thinking about leaving China this summer. Its high time I start taking note of the things I love about this quirky/infuriating place that I live and that Vivi calls home. This is the first installment.