Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Composting around the world (and Chestnut Hill)

Last week I was in Guatemala visiting my soon to be adopted daughter. During my visit I experienced an earthquake, tropical storm and a nearby volcano erupted raining black sand all over Guatemala City--all in 4 days.
Needless to say, normal day to day goings on, slowed or just plain halted, including air travel. My flight out was grounded. So I did what any desperate tourist would do and hopped a bus to the next country. I got a flight from San Salvador, El Salvador after a 4 hour drive up and down mountains with very narrow windy roads. I tried to keep my eyes shut to stem the nausea and nearly missed the women carrying still feathered limp chickens, roosters roaming the road shoulders and horses sans cowboys.
But my absolute favorite part was not the Guatemalan sink hole to hell, the Pacaya Volcano's 5 mile lava spew or the mild earthquake that I actually felt. It was the composting trash can in the San Salvador airport. Located next to the recycling trash can was a composting can with colorful clear pictures of all the things that can be tossed in--banana peels, pizza crust, etc.
This developing nation with limited resources has made composting a priority in one of its busiest travel venues.
This prompted me to reflect on GRINCH's efforts in Chestnut Hill. Last July GRINCH hosted a composting seminar for Chestnut Hill business people and residents led by Philly Compost. At the time the only composters in the neighborhood that I knew of were Cosmic Catering and Earth Bread and Brewery.
Since last July several businesses have signed on with Philly Compost including The Wine Thief, The Chestnut Hill Farmer's Market, Night Kitchen Bakery, InFusion, Umbria, Jonathan's Best and Weavers Way Coop. Tavern on the Hill is slated to begin in July.

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