Time for confession.
Here was a dilemma, and me on the horns of it. I had occasion, recently, to take a horse float full of rubbish to the Hamilton Refuse Transfer station - the dump.
We were weighed on the way in and then again on the way out: 960 kilos of rubbish later.
The rubbish pile had been in the rain though, so some of that was water.
This was essentially a house lot. Almost every conceivable type of refuse including an old bed. To give some context; we were under strict time pressure with the loan of the float and a deadline by which to have the house cleaned and cleared out, and thus have the best chance of getting the bond back. And it was raining.
The dilemma was this: I knew, as I was chucking stuff over the edge, that a fair bit of it could have been recycled, repurposed, donated, or otherwise kept in circulation. To do this would have taken considerably more time than was available; days rather than hours I suspect, to do it properly.
We threw out a fair bit of paper which could have been recycled, a quantity of old bits of wood which could have been taken home and hoarded against future requirements,
some clothing which could have been donated, various defunct furniture, the list goes on. There is no doubt that to take the time to sort everything out and then deliver it to the various reception points, op shops, and the like would have been the right thing to do.
But I did not do that, there just wasn't the time. If I'm honest, dump-side in the cold rain there wasn't as much inclination as there should have been either.
In my defence I did divert a computer and a laptop to the back of the car and these have now joined a stockpile of similar items in our garage awaiting collection by RecycleIT. And a couple of nice bits of hardwood will make their way into the structure of the boat I plan to build - one day.
I think we all, at various times, experience this kind of thing: we know we should do something other than what we are actually doing, and we justify our actions as best we can at the time. But let's not be too hard on ourselves.
There are some countries and corporations, large and small, which care little for anything other than power and profit. These are the giants walking the planet's surface which could make a meaningful and effective difference to us all with a slightly lighter footstep.
I think it is important that when we can do the right thing - we do it, and if for whatever reason we can't do the right thing now, we recognise that we are falling short and resolve to do better in future. In this way we can ensure a progressive improvement in how we treat our planet as the current tenants. The consequences of not caring at all might be more serious than not getting the bond back.