Sometimes two girls’ trash can be other folks’ treasure…especially in North Dakota during clean-up week. I was working at home today on my computer (on my little corner of the kitchen table) and I watched one vehicle after another go boulevard shopping. I was shocked at how many folks were out making the shopping rounds in my neighborhood. They just kept coming and coming.
I wanted to stand out at the curb after the first few dozen cars had come and gone to let folks know that all the best stuff had already been carted away, but amazingly folks still kept finding things they wanted. It is true, the beauty is in the eye of the beholder…I guess so is the utility. I thought the best selections – the earlybird specials if you will – were snapped up last night within minutes of the items being placed out. But what do I know? I was the one who no longer saw enough beauty or utility in them to keep them.
I never experienced any such thing as clean-up days in California. It is a uniquely North Dakota experience for me. I have to tell you though – I like it. It makes me happy that the things that I don’t need any longer find new homes. There is something very sensible about the whole process that seems to fit a state like North Dakota. We are sensible folks here (note I include myself, as after almost 14 years I feel I have earned the label of North Dakotan). Sensible folks don’t waste things. Sensible folks don’t feel a need to waste money buying something new just to impress the Jones (although in this area it is likely the Andersons or the Johnsons). Perhaps that sensibility explains why we are doing so well economically as a state compared to other states – just saying California…perhaps you too should think about having a clean-up week.
The practicality of North Dakota is very alluring to me – particularly as I age. I suppose it has something to do with no longer being bright and shiny myself. I am not unlike the stuff on the boulevard I surmise…older, used a bit, but I still have a lot of utility for the person who can see past the dings and dents to the character and charm that remain. I still have a lot of life in me just like the stuff on the boulevard and just like the stuff on the boulevard I surmise someone will come along some day and see a treasure in me. But don’t look for me out on the boulevard…I think that probably sends the wrong message.
Day six hundred and sixty-seven of the new forty – obla di obla da