Barefoot Pirates!

Barefoot PiratesOne thing I really appreciate in India is the way trash is recycled/repurposed. Everything has a use or a value to someone and it gives me a sense of well-being knowing that what I no longer need can be of use to someone else and not end up dumped in the landfill.
Unlike in NZ where the cost of repairs meant it was cheaper to throw things out and buy new ones, everything here can be repaired or recycled at a minimal cost and sometimes for a profit. The food processor and rice cooker in our house have been repaired more times than I can remember and I am not sure there are any original parts remaining in them by now.
A whole sector of society survives on recycling. Our newspapers for example are collected once a week by a man who comes on a bicycle with a portable scale, weighs the paper and cardboard we give him and pays us by the kilo for it. The same with any metal or plastic items.
Even old carpets can be traded in for new ones with the carpetwallah who pushes his hand-cart past the house with a surprising (and given the noise he makes banging on our gate, irritating) frequency.
Other things that we don’t want I put out on the curb as someone always seems to find a use for them. One man’s trash is another man’s treasure as they say and it is really quite amazing how quickly the items disappear, even the most innocuous or seemingly undesirable pieces.
Yesterday evening I put out an old pair of shoes which I no longer had use for, thinking that I would probably have to throw them in the trash the next morning as it would be unlikely that anyone would want them, the smell alone making passersby cross to the opposite side of the street.
Imagine my surprise when the next morning I found only the right shoe remaining on the footpath. I can only assume that a one-legged man, quite possibly (in fact almost definitely) a pirate, had come past during the night and found the shoe to his liking.
I wondered how long it would be before someone missing the opposite leg, maybe another pirate, would come along and take the remaining shoe.
I didn’t have to wait for long, my neighborhood obviously a hotbed for unshod pirates. It was gone the next morning!
Now how to get rid of that parrot I don’t need anymore?

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