Friday, November 04, 2005

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

Living in the South has its ups and downs: I love the warmer weather, but I was ready for fall long before it arrived (and this week it's back up to 80 degrees again). The landscape is hilly and generally more interesting than northwest Ohio, but that also means there are no straight roads, anywhere--I believe it would take us half as long to get places at home as it does here, because the shortest distance between two points is a straight line. Southern accents are fun to listen to, though sometimes hard to understand. Living near a big city is great, but the 9.25% Tennessee sales tax is not so great.

My biggest gripe, though, is that no one recycles down here. I am by no means a tree-hugger. To be honest, I don't give the environment a whole lot of thought, which is unfortunate because I do believe that as Christians we should care about and be good stewards of the earth. Anyway, I'm definitely anti-littering. And I was raised to recycle. I remember learning that little slogan as early as fourth grade: Reduce, Reuse, Recycle!

My family has recycled for as long as I can remember, and my hometown started curbside recycling while I was still young. Now that my parents live out in the country, they have to be proactive about it, but my dad still has bins in the garage for glass, plastic, tin and aluminum. It's ingrained in my head never to throw away any plastic bottle with a 1 or a 2 symbol, any glass jar or any metal can. I recycle them without thinking about it.

So what is with these people in the South who do not recycle? I cannot stand to throw these things away because I have been trained to save them and recycle. I feel so wasteful tossing them in the garbage. I did find a (rundown and slightly unnerving) place a couple of miles down the road that takes aluminum and steel cans, but I have tried and failed to find any recycling center for glass or plastic. Come on, Tennessee, save the planet!


Unknown said...

Hello, you don't know me...but I came across your blog and was surprised at how similar (kind of) our stories are. I too am married (except I make up the husband half, haha) and am 23. We are transplants to the South as well! And, we just had this whole discussion on the lack-of-recycling topic. At any rate, I'm not one to usually leave posts where I know not the individual, but I just thought I'd say that I appreciated your blog.

Have a great week - and God bless!

pk said...

Yeah, I'm with you. Not an environmentalist phenatic, but positive that we are to be life-givers to creation as well as people.

Maybe you could become active in the local city council and bring recycling to the South!

rebekah said...

hey amy -- my friend carrie from PT school would love to extend an enormous hug to you! she is obsessed with recycling. okay, she lives in chattanooga, and at least has that city and its recycling plan figured out... but i will ask her if she has any info on good 'ole middle tn. i know we have been saying this for a while... but i really look forward to seeing you -- this is just a very hectic time as the semester closes down... but soon, promise.