RetuRO and two and a half pennies... for dignity

Dan Nicolaie
English Section / 21 iunie

Versiunea în limba română

Dan Nicolaie

Hell is paved with good intentions. I have a growing impression that we are no longer satisfied with just paving, we also put curbs.

Sensitive to environmental problems since childhood (in the 80s I bought a ball for 25 lei, with the money obtained from the sale of empty bottles), I decided to enter the "time of recycling", as the authorities invite us. Have you ever danced at a party for an hour with several partners who looked like they were high on energy? If so, you know the feeling, you're not in control anymore while others are spinning around you and at the end you leave the hall with your clothes on your head and completely dizzy. This happen to me.

As it's hot and I like to hydrate properly, I found myself with the balcony blocked by a belly bag full of containers full of air. In the evening, I coolly said to return them. Brutal failure, the apartment no longer worked, I was invited to come back another time. The next day, in the morning, still in the cold, I took the bag in my arms and went to the store where I could return it. On the alley in front of the block, a neighbor who specializes in bottles, had one with a beer in his hand, wanted to point out that he is not a specialist in recycling either: "I don't even bend over after 50 money". I understand, but if we still share impressions, let me offer him one too: "If you bent over, maybe you would be able to pay off the maintenance debts, because they filled the hall with posters in which you are mentioned as a great champion". We see each other for work, he probably curses me a little, I get to the store, another failure. "The store opens at 7:00 a.m., but the machine only works after 8:00 a.m.," I am informed by a saleswoman. I look at my watch and realize that I should spend the next 15 minutes guarding a bag of empty bottles at the door of a store. I give up, I'm coming home. Around lunchtime, I decided to take advantage of the free minutes and start over. On the alley, the old man, with a bottle of beer: "Hey, you signed up, you're collecting a lot of money". "Squeeze, squeeze, I want to surprise you and pay your maintenance".


I get to the store, queue to return. A lady bodyguard comes and invites us to leave the premises and wait outside. It was sunny and hot outside and our containers in our bags were melting. A gentleman in front of me informs me that a saleswoman made us milogis. Possibly, but lacking two other sources, I abandoned the investigation. When I was more indecisive than ever whether to have a heart attack or a stroke, it was my turn. I put in two bottles and on the third the machine started to scream. "attempted fraud" was written on the screen. I could see myself at the police with handcuffs accused of fraud, the amount of the damage: 50 money. "That's what he does," a saleswoman reassures me. Press two buttons and the job restarts.

Come on!

I put in another bottle and the machine revolts again. This time the bags were full. A gentleman comes, kicks me out of the store because he couldn't take out the bins with bags in the tight space. I'm called back, I pack what I still have, get the small amount (15 RON - 13 pet, 2 glass, 5 aluminum, 0 steel) and go out. I admit, I felt like crying outside.


Hard to answer. From a certain age, you can't even cope with all hours.