Looking at Puente Hills (Friday Fictioneers)

Looking at Puente Hills (Fiction word count: 40)

Hard to believe that nice looking mountain used to be a landfill.

I know, they did a great job covering trash.

Ready to leave?

Not yet. Let’s watch the sunset for a few more minutes…

Okay, but what’s that smell…?

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This is part of Friday Fictioneers – to join in or read more entries for this photo prompt from Roger Bultot – go HERE.

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Author Notes:

My fiction pretends to looking at Puente Hills Landfill, which is the largest landfill in the United States (500 feet high and 700 acres across) and it was fully shut down on October 31, 2013. I used to live in Long Beach, CA twice- and so I wonder how much of my stuff was buried there… lol

I live in Virginia now (as um, everyone knows cos I think I mention it enough – lol -) and on the way to Virginia Beach we always pass this large hill that seems out-of-place while heading east (the mountains in our state are the other way). We found out that the large hill is a skate park placed on top of a covered landfill. And recently I was reading a post at Bennington Road (here) that featured a super cool Philadelphia, PA photo of some street signs and skateboarders (my son2 used to skateboard for a little while when he was younger) and so this post was fresh in my mind when I went back to see the FF photo prompt.

Covered landfills do not necessarily emit odor – that was a joke in my FF piece – but many wonder about the long-term impact of such hills:

“…covered landfill’s original identity will become a memory. Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Edward Humes, author of Garbology: Our Dirty Love Affair with Trash, says constantly covering up our trash means we never fully understand how much garbage we generate. “You notice what we call our trash companies: They’re waste ‘management.’ Think about that,” Humes says. “They’re managing our waste; they’re not reducing our waste, they’re not disappearing our waste. And what that means is they’re really good at picking it up and getting it out of sight [and] making garbage mountains out of it.” (rest is here)

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27 thoughts on “Looking at Puente Hills (Friday Fictioneers)

  1. Once in awhile, the thought about what happen to our garbages in the land fill or wonder do management people go through them and try to recycle any of them or not. I know there are separate recycling bin these days but only few kinds of material are allowed to be in the recycling bin. There are many more stuff than should be recycled too.

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    1. Interesting comment YC – I heard that China actually buys much of our trash and then uses it to make products that we buy – so the shooing containers do not go back to China empty – they often put trash in them –
      And I have heard mixed things about recycling – in my humble opinion I think we can all do our part by “reducing” the trash we generate – with less containers and packaging -are u a big recycle guy?

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  2. I know what you mean by covering the trash. When I was working, I used to drive on 60 FWY and the smell rushed into my car and I had to turn off the fresh air and turn on the air condition. I think Oregon has a more complex system separating the “trash” from the scrap of food that would be used for compost. Homeowners are provided with a list of what is considered as trash. The recyclable is divided into two categories. I have to ask my daughter which goes to what category. The only two categories I have no problem with are the bottles and food scraps….

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    1. Hi M – I mean grandma M – well I do not think this particular landfill emits odor – it is covered and I guess treated – but many do (as you noted!!) and I was actually maybe having a little fun… like maybe the smell was something else. lol
      and your description of Oregon’s system sounds like what they do in Canada – they separate the food trash that can be composted and recycled in certain ways. I think that is so brilliant – and I am glad to hear some States are doing that…

      PS this was an image I meant to add at the end – I call this stupid trash…. but it is our culture right now…

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      1. Yes, I know. Most of the states are not environmental conscious or friendly. Oregon also promote bicycling. The bike lanes are half the width of a regular lane. I read that when the congressman went to DC, he bikes to the White house for meeting. So I think it takes leadership to have statewide implementation!!

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  3. I think the time will come when the world has had enough of humans and their rubbish. It will fight back, even if it means getting rid of us!

    You know how someone can say to you that they have a sore throat and you immediately imagine you have one, too. Well, I think the same goes for smells. If someone says landfill, you think of stinky rubbish and then you can smell it. We are so suggestible.

    Your story worked well being only 40 words. It gave it real punch.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Sarah – thanks so much!
      That was nice to read – about the wc- and the suggestibility point is a good one – hah!
      And was just reading about an 80 year old who makes almost no trash 😊- and I guess time will tell

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      1. ow wow- quite a difference – and we were interviewing for a job back in 2001- for Mission Viejo (and omg would that not have been a good fit for our humble family) – anyhow, this lady Tammy we met said her sister had received money from a house fire and used that to relocate from southern California – and then chose Idaho for the pace of life. And for some reason, I always think potatoes because Denise Austin used to do Idaho potato commercials

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