Just so you know

“It looks so lovely, your life,” my friend V. said when we Skyped the other day. “When I read your blog, I think ‘it looks lovely.'”

We brought our petite trash bin dutifully outside. These days, I look forward to trash collection very much, because it only happens every other week. Have I mentioned we have twins? In diapers?

Yes, on our lovely street, we have a tiny bin that Sascha gets in to stomp down the trash and get us to the exalted day when trash gets collected and we can begin again. But yesterday, we dragged the bin back, still full. I was deeply distressed. I double-checked online that we had the right date for collection.

After starting at “position 29 in the queue” on the phone, I finally spoke with someone at Dublin City Council who told me that the trash bin was purposefully left behind with our disgusting diapers and rotting meat and such because the account was in “arrears” from the previous owners. We would need to set up a new account under our name. I knew we’d have to pay for trash collection, but the owners neglected to mention we’d have to set up an account. They made it sound like we’d just get a bill.

So here it is, my breaking point in loveliness. I don’t want to do this often, but I’m going on barely any sleep (the boys have been on some night-waking bender the past week), and we are talking about rotting garbage. In America, (yes, Dad, I said it), I would have just recited numbers on a credit card over the phone, she would have taken some info, and bam! instant account with a paying customer, no interruption in service. Here in Ireland, however, they do things a bit more slowly and a lot more verbosely. Everything you do requires various letters: ones you write, ones you wait for. Not emails. Not forms you download and print out. Letters. We get a letter informing us the gas company has added our email to the account. A letter telling us to send a letter to immigration. Lots of mail, but I guess at least their post isn’t nearing bankruptcy like ours.

My instructions to set up a new account are as follows: send a copy of our lease (1st and signatory page) along with a letter requesting that a new account be set up. And then I guess we wait for a response as to when we are good to go with leaving our trash curbside.

So tomorrow, these are on our “to do” list:

1) Walk with boys and strollers and bags full of glass bottles (clank-clank through Ranelagh Village) to the “Bring Centre,” where, you guessed it, you have to bring your glass recyclables because the regular recycling pick-up does not collect them.

2) Take a taxi stuffed with our hideous refuse several miles away to the only center that will accept our trash. (This is Sascha’s idea. Mine was to surreptitiously throw away smaller bags of trash under cover of night at various public bins until we had a manageable amount in ours that might tide us over to the time where we can have our trash collected.)

3) Compose an epistle to the Dublin City Council on behalf of our rejected bin.


This is the glamorous life I lead. On very little sleep. Jealous?