This Dump Ain’t No Dump

this-dump-cover When I think of dumps I think of my sweet Sven. You see, we fell in love way back when. And when we did, we were so in love, that we did everything together. Even trips to the dump. "What in the hell are you doing?" says Shirlee-Bunny. "What?" I said. "Emmit told me that you were at the dump with Sven yesterday." "Yeah." "He told me that you were helping Sven toss your recyclables into those containers." "Yeah," I said, again. "Well, stop it Millie. You are giving the rest of us girls a bad name." So, in the name of sisterhood, I opted out of our Saturday morning dump dates. And then sometimes my step-daughter rode along with her dad. But the two of them could not be trusted without supervision. "Millie, that old man's butt crack was sticking out!" says Adrienne. "Yeah, I know." "He wasn't wearing any socks or underwear." "He never does," I replied. "He's gross," she stated. She was referring to the dump-meister of the day. "That's just the way he is," I said. "He's really grouchy too," she continued. "He yelled at Dad for bringing dirty leaves." This discussion was taking place all the while she and her father were unloading the truck bed. Because they had returned from the dump with more shit than they left with. "What is all of that stuff?" I said. "Dad says he can fix this," Adrienne says, as Sven handed down a pink bike that was missing a pedal. "Sven, please tell me that that is not cement mixer number three," I gasped. "It is," he says. "This one might have the parts I need to make one of the other ones work." It didn't. My memory of the dump was that it was pretty dumpy. It was a popular gathering spot for inebriated bees and it reeked of stale beer and rotting fruit. But, other than one unfortunate incident on a Saturday morning a couple of years ago, when I had to hike over to retrieve Hunter, our perfect canine, before even having had a chance to comb my hair or brush my teeth, I haven't been there. When I did show up that morning, Hunter was being detained in their little shack, after having rolled in a puddle like lake, made of rain water and motor oil. And then he had been terrorizing innocent people by being his super friendly self. So, the dump guy called the number on his collar. "I'll be right there," I'd said, aghast. I immediately called Sven on his cell phone. But Sven didn't answer his cell phone. Because Sven's cell phone was on the kitchen table, playing a tune. And Sven was not home. So. I had to go. And then, late this September, Sven had rotator cuff surgery. He was not supposed to drive for six weeks. He drove the next day. But, what he was not able to do was whip garbage bags into the dumpster and pour the recyclables into the green containers. Thus, after a thirty year moratorium, the Millie and Sven dump couple, made a dump date comeback. "What are you doing up there?" Sven yelled. "I am putting on some mascara," I hollered down. "Why? We are just going to the dump." "Wait a minute," I said as he pulled into the driveway that leads to the transfer site that is less than a quarter of a mile from our own driveway. "What happened?" "What do you mean?" says my dashing one armed date. "When did they pave this part?" "A while ago." "Why is everything so clean?" "It is?" "Why is everything so cute." "It is?" "Oh my God, Sven. Look at the shack." The shack was lined with pumpkins and vibrant yellow and magenta hardy mums. The recyclable bins were in perfect order. The burn pile, the trading table, the Goodwill Hut. All so. So. dump-good-will dump-greas dump-recycle DARN CUTE. Way back when, back in our early dump dating days, I never thought that in my future, I would be saying, "I can't wait to see how they decorate for Christmas." dump-burnpile "I think a bunch of women run it now," says Sven.

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