In Argenton there is a twice weekly rubbish collection so on the odd occasion we forget to put the rubbish out it’s no big deal, though I have been known to jump out of bed and fly down the stairs in my dressing gown when I’ve heard the garbage truck coming down the road.
You have to sort the rubbish into ‘wet or messy’ – so mostly kitchen waste – and ‘clean and dry’ – which is more than what we Aussies would think of as the recycling: it includes all plastics without restriction and also shoes and clothes. Glass however must be put aside to be placed in community receptacles around town. We use a wine bottle bag we brought over from Australia, though somehow with such cheap wine and beer here, we quickly exceed the half dozen bottles it’s designed to carry. We have a wheelie bin for the dry rubbish, but if you don’t, the Mairie (Town Hall) provides clear blue plastic bags to differentiate from the other garbage bags and you can put out as many as you like.
The charge for this is not included in the annual property taxes like we are used to, but is billed twice yearly as Ordures Ménagères at around €120. The best thing is that it includes free access to the tip (déchetterie) which is fantastic for all our renovating remnants. Again, there is a bit of sorting to be done: cardboard, wood, metal, construction material etc but you can also leave your glass, oils, batteries, green waste etc. It seems like a really good system and it’s amazing how much you can fit in the back of the car.
After our latest cleanout and 3 trips to the tip the garage looks a lot better.