By Lee Scott
New Beaufort residents must learn the customary practices of the community when they first move here. One of my first learning experiences concerned the trash.
Having grown up in cities and towns that supplied trash service, I was surprised when I learned we would have to pay for garbage service in our neighborhood.
Then, after the first week, I noticed there were no trash cans lined up in front of the houses on my street. When I asked my neighbor, she explained that everyone just dropped off trash at the convenience center.
And so began my trips to the dump.
Initially my spouse would go, but after a while, the bagged trash fell on me with him taking on the trips with bigger loads that required our pickup truck.
Now I have gotten into the habit of grabbing a few bags of trash when I am going into town and stopping off at the convenience center on my way.
Although I find myself needing a Post-It note on the dashboard to remind myself not to pass the entrance while heading to the grocery store. Nothing is worse than opening the trunk of the car, only to discover I forgot to stop.
As the years have gone by, I have become to appreciate the community camaraderie, a spirit of friendship, at the convenience center.
There is always a willingness to help one another. On those days when I do need to use the truck to drop things off, I never have to worry about unloading it, because I know, invariably, some man will come up and help me. Who says chivalry is dead?
I have also seen people help others unload the remnants of a garage sale from a car or truck and then ask if they can have some of the items.
One day while throwing out an old broken lamp, a fellow came up and said, “I’ll take that if you don’t want it.”
Turned out he could use the lamp parts to fix another lamp. From then on, I made it a habit to ask one of the employees if something might have value to someone else.
The recycling area amazes me too. People get in line patiently waiting to throw away newspapers, plastic and glass.
When you think about it, this is one place in town where everyone comes together. You see neighbors along with strangers. People in Mercedes, old pickup trucks and minivans, all having the same goal – getting rid of trash.
And in the end, as I have finished unloading my trash and headed back to my car, I always hear the familiar, “Have a blessed day!”
“You too!” I yell back.
We do that here in Beaufort.