Sundry Wonders recounts what I saw and thought along my walks with Ollie over the past week. Photos taken with a Fujifilm X-T4 (very much a beginner) or my Pixel 5 phone (if we walked in the middle of the day, or I was in a bit of a rush). I’d love to hear about and see what you experienced this week. Let me know in the comments!

A recycling errand

Ollie and I had business at the Department of Public Works last week (well, I did, anyway, and he wanted, as always, to come along), recycling electronic waste purged from my bedroom organizing. We walked straight there, Ollie stopping to sniff new smells, as I stopped to admire fading sunflowers and to observe a can that had nearly transformed to dust on a brick sill behind a chain link fence.

A guy passed us, walking briskly with an old flatscreen scooped under one arm; he passed us again on his way back. We were taking our time.

That’s it

At the Works, the way in was not clear, and I walked hesitantly down a driveway without a sidewalk toward what looked like an airplane hangar. I felt like I should have my arms up, in case I’d stumbled someplace where I didn’t belong. An older man in tee-shirt and jeans who turned out to be the guard observed me for a bit, probably amused, and, then, limping toward me, called out in a pure Somerville accent, “Can I help you?”

“Yes,” I said, “Or, I hope so? Is this where we recycle our electronics?”

“Yep.” I walked toward him. “Right there,” he said when I reached him. “Just show me your ID for proof of residence.”

My ID received a scant glance before he nodded, and pointed again to the giant corrugated cardboard box. I saw that guy’s TV. Placing my old laptop and tablet in the recycling box, I felt like there should be something more to it. There wasn’t. The guy nodded at me to indicate that was it, and, thanking him, we were on our way. I really wanted to take a look around and take photos of the hangar but there was no way that guy was going to let me do that.

Overexposed

On our way back, we meandered, taking a section of the Community Path that, if I’ve walked it before, it had been years. I could see why; it wasn’t that interesting to me, but Ollie enjoyed the variety. In front of a bank of newer condos, we walked up the stairs to get back up to the street. I saw a side street with the same name as the street that my dad grew up on—I took a quick overexposed shot to send to him; the name barely legible in the glare of the sun.

From there, this street grew steep enough that I took the next side street to make our way back to the way we came. A delivery driver spoke animatedly on the phone in a language I didn’t understand as he organized packages in the back of his truck. Gardens still bloomed, and I wondered when the first frost would come.

Recycling Time

A telephone pole with treasures for the taking; a woman reverently (it seemed to me) carried a clock and placed it carefully next to a lampshade and candle holder. “Check out the clock,” she said to me. “Don’t you want it? It’s inlaid wood, probably from Turkey.”

“It’s beautiful,” I replied, admiring the intricate design and trying to envision where I might put it. I came up empty. “I do not need it, though.”

“But don’t you want it?”

I’m not sure why she wanted to give me her recycled time, and I’m also not sure why I felt obligated to take the burdensome beauty.

“No, thank you,” I replied, standing firm. “I’ve just come back from recycling old things, and I don’t need any more stuff.”

She nodded, getting it. “An old neighbor gave me this clock when he moved. I love it, but sometimes things do not fit, you know?”

“Sometimes they just don’t. I hope it finds where it belongs.”

Instead of taking the time, I snapped a photo of the sun shining through leaves.

Snaps from the week, all taken with my phone.

Sundry Wonders

Catch all Sundry Wonders posts, and let me know what you experienced on your walks  in the comments.

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