The city needs trash cans

I took my nephew to the gateway of India a while ago, and had a really difficult time teaching values. After looking at the sea from every possible angle, he pointed at the bottles and other garbage thrown in the sea. I saw many tourists, foreign and Indian, guilty of the act. I was really very indignant. We, Mumbaites, can be very touchy that way. We might not keep our city clean, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t too.

Looking at my nephew, I realised that this could be a fine teaching moment. He was now busy with his dairy-milk. I told him, “When you finish, you throw the wrapper in the trash can. Other’s will learn from you.”

He dutifully nodded.

Gateway of India, Mumbai.
Gateway of India, Mumbai.

Minutes later, we started searching for a trash can. There wasn’t any. We walked all around the entire stretch and some more. I could see signs of apprehension in my nephew’s eyes. He must have started wondering if he’ll have to keep walking till we spot a trash can. What if we don’t find one?

Finally, I told him to do what I always do. We decided, we don’t need a trash can. We had one at home. We could take the wrapper home in my purse and throw it in our own trash can.

Then, I realised the source of my habit of carrying all such waste home in my purse. There never is a trash can nearby. The only places which have a trash can are the railway stations and the hawker’s stands.

I looked back at the people throwing the trash in the sea. Most of them weren’t carrying any bags. Normally, I am all on the side of cleanliness but even I was appalled at the alternative prospect of carrying all the trash in the back pocket of their jeans.

There are ‘keep city clean’ signs everywhere. The authorities want the city clean? Where’s the trash can?


4 thoughts on “The city needs trash cans

  1. You are right Kiran, we need trash cans every where and wherever they are, we need them to be emptied in a healthy way. Even I do the same like you, I carry all the waste home. But, when it comes to the biodegradable waste, I put them under the trees/plants where it can become compost. If not, they will come home 🙂

    TC! Keep smiling 🙂

    1. It’s an important point Sindhu. Trash cans aren’t of any use if they aren’t emptied in a healthy way.
      We all need to follow your way for making compost. My mom does it too. We use the compost for planting small plants.
      Thanks and TC. 🙂

  2. Indeed you are right there will be big Hoardings ‘Keep the city clean and Green’ but hardly find any thrash can in much needed places…So the people also don’t mind throwing litter here and there..

    1. Yup. They do need to understand that for actual cleanliness, there is a need to dump trash somewhere. Absence of trash can means that somewhere is on the road. People need to understand too, that roads and sea is not a dumpster.
      Keep visiting.

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