I usually don’t go around looking at rubbish bins unless I have something to throw away. But when I passed one in the park where I walk almost everyday, a Bulldog caught my eye. He was cute with staring bulging eyes. I was interested to know more so I checked.
It was an advertisement for an artist who can paint your pet for posterity. All you have to do is to give him/her a photograph and they will, according to them, make a beautiful painting to hang on your wall forever.
This is basically how it started. Austrians do love their pets, often to an extent some would regard somewhat exaggerated, to say the least!
So curiosity took me to other rubbish bins along the pathway. I confess, I had never thought about garbage bins as a source of information. There were all sorts of disposable messages.
“Krise in Europa!” A photo of what it looked like a demonstration with riot police in the foreground. Well there is a crisis in Europe, fuel and otherwise and we are all bracing ourselves for what is coming this winter. I imagined some kind of a social movement to bring awareness to the crisis we are going through.
Well sort of but not in the way I expected. Krise in Europa is actually a card game! 32 cards, each one with a detailed account of a different country and the reasons why it is supposedly in crisis now. A perfect game to play in your living room, according to the authors. Moving on …
I’m still a bit baffled by the living room crisis in Europe card game when I encounter “Rote Hilfe”. Red help… well at this point I don’t want to make anymore guesses. But when I check it does make sense. Apparently a group of left wing activists who support activists who have come into conflict with the law. Well ok …
Suddenly as if to lift the somewhat heavy mood I was starting to feel, a word. But not just any word, a very positive word! One of those words I don’t mind learning in German but I’m sure I will have a very hard time to pronounce. “Glückseligkeit”! And what is, let me write it again, Glückseligkeit? A sort of happiness! According to my Austrian husband, It combines “Glück”, which means fortune or luck and “Seligkeit” meaning bliss. Well, basically this blissful fortune brings you happiness!
From happiness to SOS Balkan. Im a bit hesitating, what now I wonder. And actually it is the only disposable message that does exactly what the name implies. The founder Petar Rosandič, ak rapper Kid Pex (ok this part was a bit unexpected) is a well known humanitarian. He and his team organise aid transports along the Balkan route with donations in kind to the camps along the Bosnian-Croatian border. A very positive example of someone who grew up as a refugee child himself and now is giving back.
Ah yes! Bio kaufen reicht night aus! I agree buying organic is enough and this is something I aim for but I really wish that organic products were cheaper so that more people could afford them. I doubt that a big family with a small income can afford to buy organic products only. Some food for thought maybe, no pun intended. Boy, these rubbish messages are starting to get to me.
I can see the exit to the park approaching. So is this now going to make me look at rubbish bins in a different way? Maybe not but I did learn a few things along the way. Sometimes it is not bad to slow down and look at the world with a different perspective.
I leave you with the last two disposable messages I can see, not in a bin but on a wall. Resistance and books have historically been associated for a long time. Without books there is no knowledge and no escape. We need both. I love books although maybe I would choose something different to wear …