WASTE NOT, WANT NOT
Texto: Cat Weisweiller
Whilst global communities get increasingly geared towards recycling, its previously unsung ally, 2nd hand goods exchange, is also enjoying a timely resurgence.
It is widely recognised that one man’s trash is another man’s treasure. Spiritual philosophy claims that hoarding unused or unloved objects in our homes serves only to harbour stagnant energy that holds us back. However, by simply passing them on, their energy is renewed. The pragmatic view is: waste not, want not.
Ecologically speaking, the law of 2nd hand supply and demand, if correctly applied, could provide us with nearly all that we need, whilst inhibiting the production of anything new. Quite apart from saving us money, this reduction in consumerism would reduce global waste and, in turn, significantly help preserve natural resources.
The issue has always been not of a lack of consensus on this subject, but of a lack of connectedness, i.e. successfully matching those looking for goods with those looking to discard them. For instance, I can remember many a time when I have been clearing a home of a veritable array of fully operational goods (microwave, sofa, fridge, toaster, TV, etc.) – but, in a great rush to move on, have had no time to find them a good home, instead, and with heavy heart, committing them to land-fill. On the frustrating flip side, at other times in my life, I wished that the very same items had miraculously reappeared to me, rather then being left with no choice but to buy brand new replacements. Sound familiar?
In the U.S.A, yard sales have long existed to redress this balance, as have car boot sales in the U.K and garage sales in Australasia. But now, the world over, the awkwardness of admitting personal funds are tight, is eclipsed by something much more pertinent – a pressing need to shop more consciously and help obliterate waste. It is widely celebrated that the once held stigma of flea markets and 2nd hand goods exchange, has moved from one of suggested personal lack, to one of immense ecological service and social enjoyment – a sentiment that we can enjoy in droves here in Ibiza:
It is worth knowing that every zone in Ibiza has a designated unwanted household goods collection day. Householders are invited to phone their local town hall and book a free collection from outside their buildings on said day. A quick browse online at different town halls and their corresponding pick up day, may lead one to the obvious conclusion that on any given preceding night, certain streets are bursting with discarded goods awaiting their next day collection or, by chance, a happy new home with you.
Should you not find your way to these abandoned goods first, they fall into the kind hands of ‘Fundació Deixalles Eivissa’, a government-subsidised scheme designed to offer the public goods at more affordable prices. Any discarded furniture or electrical goods worthy of repair are dropped at their depot for reconditioning – later resurfacing as cut-rate goods at their shop, Deixalles Eivissa, on the San Antonio to Ibiza road.
On the subject of charitable ventures, there are, contrary to popular belief, actually 5 charity shops on the island. These seemingly elusive Caritas shops (their addresses can be found in the listings at the end of this article) are grateful for free donations of anything you are looking to cast off – particularly clothing. These non-profit shops are home to many a pleasing 2nd hand deal and all proceeds help support locals in need.
Also, keep an eye out for our very own ‘De Todo en Ibiza’; a free newspaper which, in a bid to keep the recycle consciousness cogs turning, offers free classified ads for anyone looking to sell their 2nd hand wares.
For more bargain shopping coupled with the customary buzz of cosmopolitan Ibicencan hospitality, we need look no further then the island’s flea markets. On Sunday days throughout the year, Rastrillo Market at the Cala Leña Restaurant is a 2nd hand goods fest – many a bargain is to be had in amongst the bustle of live music and steaming plates of paella. On Saturday days throughout the year, the equally animated Sant Jordi market at the Hipódromo, also offers much 2nd hand stuff in amongst the new.
Last, but by no means least, a call goes out from ‘Casi Todo’ auctioneers to the aspiring interior designers amongst us. They predominantly buy up the contents of sold or deceased estates. Individual items are then put under the hammer at monthly auction or sold at their shop in amongst other one-off pieces including classic cars.
Who would ever have imagined that earning ecological brownie points could prove both so profitable and so enjoyable? This growing shift in attitude indicates that a significant curb in consumerism is fast approaching. Some would say, not a moment too soon. Thankfully Ibiza, true to form, gives us an opportunity to jump on the band wagon and be part of this exciting change.