Garbage

The next time you grumble as you have to be the one in your house to tie up the plastic garbage bag and wrestle it out of the garbage can to carry it to the garbage bin, which is conveniently located next to your garage…please stop and think of this. In Niger, there are no garbage bins next to garages. There is not a company that drives by to pick up garbage and take it to a landfill for a small monthly fee. There are matches. And there are mounds. EVERYWHERE. Yes, in Niger garbage is burned. Anywhere and everywhere! The smell of fire is in the air always, and I am getting used to it. I am getting used to the sight of little burned mounds all over the place, with wild goats rummaging through to find the least-charred items for their dinner. I thought of this as I was resting today, the smoky smell wafting in through our heavily-screened window. I thought about what a normal part of life it is, this smell, now that I’ve been experiencing it for almost two months. How quickly we get used to something! 

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