18 December 2012


The one thing I have trouble getting used to in the Latin American countries I’ve visited is the enormous amount of rubbish in the streets. Not bags of neat garbage lined up waiting to be collected, but the soda can someone finished and tossed out their car window and the chips someone else just threw on the ground after its contents were eaten and a pile of papers and a torn shirt and random pieces of metal and so much else.

I have talked about this with other travelers, and someone explained that the U.S. did a massive anti-littering campaign and that’s what cleaned up our streets. It doesn’t make sense here. For instance, in Nicaragua everyone throws their trash on the group – but then you see people furiously sweeping daily in front of their house (People, who am I kidding? WOMEN. Women sweeping.), sweeping up the candy wrapper of the kid next door and the beer can the neighbor left on the stoop after finishing it.

I was shocked when I landed in Manuas, Brazil, the first time I was ever in Latin America. I couldn’t believe the dirtiness, the filth, the rubbish, the grossness. Why? It was really disturbing. Why would people do it?

I don’t get it. I see trash and that is one of the things that spoil my trips – seeing all the rubbish. Yes, it’s reality…but why does it have to be?


David H. said...

I'm heading to Buenos Aires on Saturday. First visit to South America. Thanks for this heads up, at least I'll be prepared.

David H. said...
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