Taking Out The Trash In The Valley Of The Corn

I have three options for garbage disposal, Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. On any of those days, if I get up before 7:00, put on my mask and jacket, grab the bag of trash, wobble downstairs, unlock the massive metal door, step outside, re-lock the door, turn the corner and cross the street, bags are piling up. Shadowy figures in the half-light of morning lugging their own refuse approach from every direction.

If I wait until I hear the clanging bell of the running man as he races down the street slightly ahead of the garbage truck, I’m too late.

I live on Valle del Maiz, a name that translates as Valley of the Corn and I’m usually awake long before 7 a.m. However, right now in San Miguel de Allende mornings are cold – 35 to 40 degrees Fahrenheit cold – and it takes a generous helping of stern self-talk to motivate.

But today I did.

I’ve established a ritual to reward the pre-dawn effort. Once back inside the house, energized by the brisk journey, I pour a steaming mug of coffee and climb the stairs to my rooftop. Sunset in SMA is glorious, but so is sunrise and the after-trash timing is perfect.

As I emerged onto the terrace this morning, four hot-air balloons floated silently against a pink-purple sky laced with gold.

I marveled, mesmerized, at this other-worldly visitation. If I didn’t look up, I’d never know they were there. Soundless, carried on breezes, they drifted directly overhead, a special gift just for me. I felt it like a bubble in my chest, a burst of joy, a message without words.

By the time they’d passed, I’d taken dozens of photos and my fingers, and coffee, were cold.

I shivered in my jacket and headed downstairs for the warmth of the kitchen. Coffee refreshed, I grabbed my journal and resumed the routine that carries me through the other six days of the week. So far, every rooftop, garbage-day dawn has been graced with balloon sitings. What a touch of magic for simply taking out the trash.

8 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Anonymous
    Feb 17, 2022 @ 03:19:47

    Your writing is so soothing to read. Also, I have been to San Miguel de Allende and I’ve felt the magic there. The photo of the rooftop transported me to 2016 when I visited there with my Mom and found that the building I was in had a “hidden” rooftop very similar to the one in your photograph. I enjoy all of your pieces but this one was special. All the best to you…

    Liked by 1 person

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  2. barbparcellswritingalife
    Feb 17, 2022 @ 03:31:31

    What a beautiful way to start the day! I could almost see it along with you!

    Liked by 1 person

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  3. Anonymous
    Feb 17, 2022 @ 11:38:09

    Love it! SL

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  4. Diane Struble
    Feb 17, 2022 @ 12:03:21

    Lovely, Sherry.  It is a good thing that it is you and not me that has to get up before sunrise.  As you know, I am a night person so your schedule just would not be easy for me.  I gather that trash cannot be taken out the night before as I do here.  Balloon are certainly pretty.  Nice of them to show up for you each week.  Thanks for the photos.

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    • writingforselfdiscovery
      Feb 18, 2022 @ 06:49:18

      That was my question, why not take it out the night before after dark. So I did it once. It was the only lonely little trash bag sitting on the sidewalk. There’s no trash bin so I get it. The city probably doesn’t want a mountain of trash bags just sitting on the sidewalk overnight. It would force pedestrians into the street.

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