I did some recycling today. I loaded up a couple of month's worth of paste board and Reed's Ginger Beer bottles in the back of my Outback. I got the two printers that had gone bottoms up at the same time and put them in the back seat and headed out.
My first stop was at Axcess Technologies. It is in a business/warehouse complex that was on my way downtown. You just pull up behind the building and drop your stuff off where ever you see a where someone else has left theirs. There were a couple of monitors on the back steps so I figured my printers could keep them company.
Next I went to Ecology in Action at the corner of 9th Street and I 35. Since I was in the recycling mood anyway, I decided to go by Ten Thousand Villages and pick up a load for them. The manager had called me Tuesday and asked me to make a run for them because they were about to get a big shipment on Wednesday and had a hallway full of boxes and paper already. I couldn't get there until Tuesday afternoon. By then, they had put it all out on the sidewalk because the shipment had arrived early. I loaded as much of it as I could but didn't want to make a second trip in the almost rush hour traffic. One of the managers took some of the rest when she headed home. I knew that they would be buried in boxes and paper again so I thought I'd help out.
We started with the biggest boxes which had been broken down and flattened. These lie flat in the back of my car when I fold down the back seat. We stacked them up almost as high as the back of the front seat before we added a couple of boxes full of smaller boxes, one just inside the back door behind the passenger seat and the other in the front passenger seat. Next, we cram a couple of lawn and leaf sized trash bags full of paper on top of and around the boxes. The other volunteer who was there was amazed that I was able to get so much in my car. It takes a little planning,but if you look at things in the right way, you can almost always pack more than if you just start throwing things in.
As I was stacking boxes into my car and making decisions in the back room as to which ones had to go first, I realized that I have been organizing and loading stuff as long as I remember. When I was growing up, my family went on long camping vacations almost every summer. A couple of times, my dad took the back seat out of a '59 Chevy and he and my mom packed almost everything behind the front seat then piled bedding on top of it all and covered it with a quilt. This build up a platform that was about a foot shorter than the back of the front seat. My brother and I would ride back there and be able to see out the windows and not miss a thing. It was also good for napping when we were little.
Later on, we had this little trailer that I painted white with red trim. My dad would put a top on it and caulk around the edges to keep it dry. Our tent, army surplus cots and mattresses along with our kitchen stuff went in there. Suit cases full of clothes and the ice chest went in the trunk. By the time I was 12 or 13, I was mostly in charge of loading the trailer. When we pulled up to a campsite, everyone went into motion. Dad would get out the kitchen stuff and set it up so Mom could start supper while my brother and I set up the tent and put the beds together. We had this down to an art by the second night out.
This is pretty much how my roadie skills were developed but I haven't stopped. One time in the 70's I loaded a pair of congas and most of a trap set into a Vega (yeah, I've been hanging out with musicians that long) but that was nothing compared to all the years I traveled with babies. I had twins when my oldest was almost 5 and the middle child was not quite 2. That was some heavy diaper bag.
It's a good day when you discover a skill that you have had forever and did not realize you were good at it.
Soundtrack for this post: Jackson Brown, The Load Out