Homeless in Vancouver: Is it Boxing Day or "Throw away the box Day"?

The magic of Christmas isn’t really visible from the alleys.

It’s pretty much buried under the mountains of holiday-related garbage.

It would be bad enough without the horde of Dumpster divers who have galloped into Fairview—mostly from the steppes of the Downtown Eastside—to sift the trash with a fine-tooth comb to find all the imagined treasure the “day after”.

I encountered a few in the evening preparing to work the “night shift”.

Whereas some night-shift workers will fortify themselves with coffee, all three of the intrepid lads I saw were sped up like a recording by Alvin and the Chipmunks—all the better to be able to spend three hours getting to the bottom of whatever might be in a big old Dumpster.

Normally this could be chalked up to the fact that Fairview’s Dumpsters mostly stay unlocked, while downtown they are kept locked by law.

But today? I can’t believe the Dumpsters in the downtown West End neighbourhood would be any less full than in Fairview, where they couldn’t lock them if they wanted to.

So anyway, all the Dumpsters I saw on Boxing Day were either overflowing with garbage or they looked like they had erupted, spraying their contents far and wide.

Oh the crows will have a field day tomorrow morning! As will the garbage pickup trucks.

Disappointing scene. Mostly because it doesn’t photograph as badly as it looks in person.
Stanley Q. Woodvine
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