Mylabradog's Guide to Roadside Shopping

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Council clean-up coming up out your way?

Here are some gems I have gathered from past cleanups...

  • antique singer sewing machine and cabinet
  • timber and iron 3pc 60s outdoor setting
  • vintage suitcases
  • 4 stroke lawnmower
  • various chairs
  • another outdoor setting
  • garden benches
  • timber
  • fencing materials
  • whipper snipper

and these are only what I could fit in my Camry sedan, or were close enough to my home to trolley!

So, how do you pick what sort of area will have the best stuff?  "Well to do" suburbs? No.

I find the best areas are those where people have been in the same house for a long time.  50s and 60s houses where the original occupants are still in residence.  I find these folks generally have looked after their stuff for a long time, and are not aware that young folks think their old stuff is nice.

Also, anyone with a big shed.  Things migrate to from the house to the shed, and may stay there for decades before the occupants decide they no longer want the item.  By the time this happens, they just want it out of their life!

Another area is the 'new estate'.  People find when they move to a brand new house that they suddenly want to replace all their 'old' stuff.  You can sometimes find furniture and appliances that are only a couple of years old. (beware of electrical appliances...if you are not an electrician, have them checked by one.)

I used to be a bit embarassed about picking things up off the roadside, but these days I don't dawdle.  It's very likely someone else will be along in a few minutes who is happy to snaffle up your find.

A bit of Roadside Shopping etiquette

  1. If someone is already looking at the pile, they have first dibs.  I usually just approach them and say what kind of things I am looking for.  Sometimes they will even have tip offs for you.
  2. If I see the resident I give them a friendly wave and call out, "I'm just taking your (whatever); hope that's okay."  Of course it is, they are throwing it out, but it doesn't hurt to be polite.
  3. Always leave the pile at least as neatly stacked as how you found it.

Most of all, have fun, and be satisfied that you are doing your bit for the planet by giving new life to something that may have ended up as landfill.

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