Monday, September 10, 2007

The Garbage Saga Continues

Some of you may recall my run-in with Bin-It, one of the local trash collection agencies in town, and how I eventually gave up on them in favor of Simon, a man who works on the grounds of our apartment complex. Simon picks up the trash every day, or at least every day we have trash to put out. We leave it right in front of our apartment and it’s rarely there longer than 30 minutes before Simon sees it and takes it away for us. It has been a very convenient arrangement.

A few weeks ago a man came banging on our gate one Saturday afternoon. He told us he would like to arrange to pick up our trash. We told him we had a guy and we didn’t need his services. He told us his company had all the legal rights to central Kampala and using anyone else was illegal.

“It’s illegal for us to use Simon?”
“That’s right.”
“We’ve been living here for four months, where have you guys been?”
“I have been by, often, but no one is ever home.”
“I work from home,” I said, “I’m here every day. You’ve never come by.”
“I am here now and you must fill out a contract.”
“We’ve paid our other guy through the end of the month. Why don’t you come by in a few weeks when we’re ready to start using you?”

The guy seemed to fall for this and he went away; we figured we’d see him a few months later and we could maybe use the same trick again. But he came back right on schedule. Simon seemed to take the news alright. With our new service, we must use the trash bags they give us and they only come twice a week, on Mondays and Fridays. They give us one trash bag at a time.

Last Friday, we loaded our trash bag and put it out back of the apartment. Monday and the garbage was still there. J called and yelled at them. The guy came by in the afternoon and apologized. There was a new guy working the grounds and he didn’t know which house was ours. He had a gray bag with him, which I assumed to be ours as he said he had picked up out back. A few minutes later I walked up to the car to head out for a few hours and there was our trash bag from Friday.

They’d picked up the wrong bag. Where the hell they got this other bag, I have no idea. It’s beyond inept.

Oh, Simon, how I miss you.

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