Saturday, June 20, 2015

dumpster diving

vegetable stand at Jean Talon Market Montreal

Dumpster diving has become quite trendy. Lohbado had a coffee with Christina at Jean Talon market in Montreal and watched various people dive into a dumpster. The first character, about 20 years old in ragged jeans, shoulder length hair, grungy backpack and iPhone hopped right inside the bin, like it was his new home. He tossed about a dozen tomatoes, a bunch of bell peppers, swiss shard and a quarter sack of potatoes into a cardboard box then climbed out. He swayed back and forth in delight, like he'd just won the lottery. Then a couple women came, dressed appropriately... don't want to get your nice clothes dirty. It's best to wear sweat pants or old jeans. They dug in deep, right up to the elbows and extracted more tomatoes and peppers.

The most fun group came next, four young women, about 19 or 20. They went at it from all sides. They turned it into a real fiesta. One of the girls looked right at Lohbado and asked him to not take her picture. He was so mesmerized by her intent eyes, he realized that he'd forgotten to put the lens cap back on his camera which sat on the bistro table facing the dumpster. He reassured the young woman. She went back to the dumpster operation, and pulled out some swiss chard. Lohbado got up. He paused to take a few photos of peppers and tomatoes at a fruit and vegetable stand facing the bistro.

The concept of scavenging for throw away food is great. With climate change threatening many plant, animal, fish and bird species, it's wise to not waste. The economic situation is not easy. Many people struggle to survive as food prices, rent and cost of transportation increase, while wages stay low. There's obviously an art to dumpster diving. One has to know where to look and how to avoid troublesome situations.

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