When I first came here in Winnipeg 17 years ago, I lived with my mother in her apartment. I arrived on a Saturday and she would have to go to work on the following Monday. She would have to leave me at home alone by myself so she showed me how to operate the stove and the microwave. She showed me where the switches are for the lights and other appliances. Later on she also showed me how to operate the washer and dryer in the laundry room. And of course, where to and how to bring the garbage out.
Every time we had a bag full of garbage (and I mean just a grocery bag full of garbage), we took that out with us when we had to leave the apartment and we went through the back door. Behind the apartment building was a huge blue garbage bin with the letters BFI on it printed in white. This is called an AutoBin. That’s where we would dump our garbage-filled bags. She told me that when she first came here, her friend, Tito Ronnie, (who was my future husband’s uncle) told her that it would be easy for her to remember where to put the garbage because BFI means Basura Fo Ito (“this is garbage” translated from Tagalog). Of course he was just being funny. BFI is the name of the waste management company but I don’t know what the initials mean. My searches on the internet led me to nothing. If you do find out what it means, please feel free to let me know.
There are AutoBins placed behind every building all over the city. They are usually located at the back of the buildings, out of public sight.
The City of Winnipeg is on a five-day cycle garbage collection. Each neighbourhood or area is assigned a day, as in Day 1, Day 2, etc. There is no collection on Saturdays and Sundays. No collection on statutory holidays either. So if your collection day is Day 1 and it is on a Monday. And let’s say, Labour Day passes, then your next collection day will be on Tuesday.
If you live in a house, you should have a metal or plastic garbage container and you put this out by the back lane on collection day. Make sure you clear all the snow so the collectors can see them.
The neighbourhood where I live doesn’t have back lanes, so we put our garbage out in the front at the curb on the night before garbage day or at least before 7:00 a.m.
But with all that snow, where do you put the garbage? On the top. Or you shovel and clear an area where to put them.
The City also has a recycling program. Every household has a blue recycling box where we put our recyclables – paper, plastic, bottles, cans, etc. We also put this out on garbage day.
Beside the Autobins of apartment buildings are these blue recycling bins where tenants can put their recyclables.
This is what the recycling bins at downtown and other commercial areas look like. It is divided in three sections inside where you can put paper, cans, and bottles. Ignore the picture of the guy holding the carrot as if it’s a microphone. That is just an advertisement of a grocery store called Peak of the Market. And just so that you don’t have to wonder why there’s no snow in this picture, this one was taken last the summer.
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