September 28, 2004
Tales From the Transfere Station
Woody's home away from home, The Keauhou transfer station. There is now a wooden guard shack where the umbrella is. Straight ahead is Kealakekua Bay. Above the station is coffee farms.
I found this picture on a website dedicated to transfer stations and it has photos
So you can see the "backstage" to paradise. This is where we country folks or those of us that dont pay someone to haul out the trash, take the trash for disposal. Its messy and I dont think very efficient. But then a lot of things are not efficient here in Hawaii. Thats ok we like it slow and easy...
I am still thinking of the three barrel collection process we had in LA. You put you green waste in the green barrel and your recyclables in the blue, then the rest in the grey...Tons and tons of stuffs were diverted out of the landfills this way. They really need to think about the trash here. Landfills are filling up and there seems to be no end in sight.
There are rules and regs about what you can throw into the trailers. Green waste must go down to Kona and stuff must be four feet or less and no commerical or toxics allowed. There is so much building going on that the builders try all the time to dump where ever they can and Woody has to call them to task for not going to the land fill and paying the tipping fee and dumping there. "Just this once " and I dont have time to drive all the way there" are heard. Somepeople just give him the finger and toss what they want into the bin. Its pretty bad.
People ask to recycle stuff. They do have bins in Kona but not where Woody is stationed so the drive to Kona takes the "drive" out of caring for the 'ania, and into the hopper goes the paper and glass that could be recycled.
Here in Keaau we have a grand recycling facility. People can bring good used stuff and people that need the stuff can just have it I think that is great. On the Kona side its a bit less organized from a recycling viewpoint. Woody sees people leave all sorts of reusable stuff at the transfere station, funiture, toys, bikes, building materiels ( a hot item, a set of french doors got left like that and two old ladies got to fighting over them that Woody had to step in and say that neither of them got them, he did...after they left the next construction guy that came in said "hey nice doors...Yeah you want um....yeah...take them Please!" and they left. Stuff come in, in the am, Woody goes to lunch and when hes back at 2, there is a whole set of new stuff there and all of the old is gone..
Woody is tempted to bring a lot of things home. Are we not all junk collectors at heart. Hes broght us some great stuff. A new Aluminum ladder, a new sweeper scooper, Books books and more books...
But I try to temper his enthusiasm. We dont want our house to look like some of our neighbors, with piles of "tresures" rusting away in the front yard...heaps of dead cars saved for parts ect... People are always pressing things on him to take with words like " I barely used it...ect...So the other day I went out to the car and was very surprised... I said
"...Woody...there is a toilet in the back seat..." He looks at it and says " Why, so there is... dont you need one in your bathroom, You'll never get the rust stains out of the old one and..." "Woody, I thought that we werent going to bring crap home from the dump." He smiles and says " Thats not Crap, that is a nearly new Crapper with new guts and everything and we need it..."
Who am I to argue with the master of the house, especially over something like this.
On the same day I noticed a hand of bananas sitting on the counter. Woody is often given presents by people that come to the transfere station. Thing like sodas or books as they see that he is reading. A Japanese tour group came in and he was given all sort of food gifts and money tips for his little tour that he gave them. One man gave him ten dollars for lunch just because. Well bananas are big on the gift list. I did think they were exceptionally nice,nearly perfect fresh bananas. I didnt try one, leaving all for Woody.
Well Woody went back to the station for his three day stint. when he came back he told me " you know those bananas that were on the counter..." Yeah..."Well didint you think they were nice? " Well yes they were really fresh..." Yeah they were fresh. See I saw them next to a stuffed monkey that was piled up next to a bunch of other stuff and there were those really pretty bananas, and I thought Gee the monkey doesnt need the bananas, and I might eat them later at the hotel...so I took the bananas and put them in the guard shack. I didnt eat them so I brought them home. Two days went by and I saw that they still looked really good so I took them back to Kona (these are the most heavely traveled bananas in Hawaii, back and forth to Kona twice, and still looked like they were just picked.) Well I didint have anything to eat so I tried to eat the dang things... I couldnt peel them. I got so frustrated that I banged them on the table. Damn things were plastic...
Just goes to show you that you should never take a banana away from a trashed monkey and that monkey made a monkey out of us...
He doesnt mind his job, its the only trash dump with a multimillion dollar view. Even though he could get more hours at another place hed rather be there looking out to sea and who can blame him. Im a bit envious myself of the sight....