Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Is a tree supposed to be a garbage can?

Our trees are not your garbage cans. Please respect.
A sign pointing out that this is not a garbage depot and will you put your garbage with you (a rough translation but you get the point). Thanks

Brussels is not the cleanest of cities. It's not full of dog poopy like Paris but it's far from immaculate like Zurich. On any given day, you can find garbage bags on the curbs tossed on the curb haphazardly waiting for a pickup. Crushed beer cans are often found on window sills or carelessly thrown on the ground. Even some cleaning people do half assed jobs (like not picking up the baby's ball and leaving it under the table). Is it laziness? Not sure and I don't want to make any stereotypes (I am just speaking from experience). Welcome to Brussels. This might also explain why one of the country's most famous symbol is a pissing boy.I think the Belgian mentality is that it's our country and we can treat it how we please. I am not going to argue with this because frankly I don't care. I am not Belgian and I was not raised to through Jupiler beer cans in some one's doorway.

The walk to my daughter's creche (aka daycare) is one of those walks that I detest. It feels long and even in broad daylight, the street feel deserted. When it is cloudy or rainy, the walk is so depressing, I feel like drowning my sorrows with some alcohol. But I hold back because I am a mum. The walk is far from exciting and all I can think about is my little girl. On one lonely corner, there are the typical city trees. You know those trees, a skinny little thing on a small patch of dirt usually surround by stones or some wire to make it clear, this is nature, respect it and don't throw your crap here. This all seems so elementary and logical. Keep your city clean. But guess what? Apparently in Brussels, tossing trash at a tree and using public spaces as garbage receptacles is common.

How bad does the garbage situation have to be before someone from the neighborhood puts up signs? He leaves a note on the tree trunk. I wonder who this person and how dirty did the tree have to get before posting these two messages. Do people walk by and take notice like I do? Do they chuckle and think, this person is on crack?Why would he care about a tree so much? I give this person credit for trying to clean up Brussels. Bonne Chance!

No comments:

Post a Comment