If you take a walk on the village streets, you might notice that there was less garbage on the streets today than there has been recently.
I noticed because my surgeon told me I have to walk every day. So I walk through the village every day.
I was diagnosed with colon cancer in June, and two days later I had a colectomy (a surgical procedure to remove about 3 ½ inches of my ascending colon).
After the surgery, my surgeon told me not to do any strenuous activity; no heavy lifting, no mowing the lawn, no painting the house, no shingling the roof, etc.
Then he told me to walk every day; a little bit a first, then longer and longer distances as I regained my strength after the operation.
Now I’m undergoing chemotherapy, so walking is not only good for me, it is just about the only exercise I can do right now.
I started out by walking around my back yard. Then I walked around the block. Next I walked downtown and back. Eventually I had enough strength back to walk down Utica Street, cross the Smith Street Bridge, then walk along the Erie Canal to the Park Avenue Bridge, and then back home.
That’s about two miles.
Every day, I would vary the route a little bit, so I wouldn’t get bored. Sometimes I’d walk home down Park Avenue to Adams Street. Other times I’d turn west, cut over to Main Street, and then walk down each and every street between the Canal and Adams Street.
That’s why I wound up walking along just about every street in the southwest quadrant of Brockport.
So I got to see first-hand every beautiful flower garden, every fine old house, along with every pile of trash and dead furniture in that part of Brockport.
You ought to try it sometime. It is an eye opening experience. There are beautiful old homes on just about every street I walked. But unfortunately, there has also been garbage piled on the many of the same streets, which completely turns the walking experience upside down and backwards.
Some people just don’t get it. According to Section 21-7 G of the Village Code, you can put your trash out 24 hours before trash pick-up, and you have to bring in your garbage cans within 12 hours after trash pick-up.
The property owner, lessee or occupant shall transport his or her refuse and refuse receptacles to his property line, but said trash and trash receptacles and recycling bins shall not be placed curbside any earlier than 24 hours before collection day, with said empty receptacles being removed from curbside no later than 12 hours after trash collection.
Most people in Brockport do that diligently, other people just ignore the rules and do whatever they want, because code enforcement has been so weak, for so long in Brockport.
Coincidentally, at the same time I was walking because of doctor’s orders, the new code officer, David Miller, was doing his code assessment of the southwest quadrant of Brockport.
So we were walking up and down the same streets in the southwest quadrant of Brockport, and seeing different things that needed attention.
Do the difficult things while they are easy and do the great things while they are small. A journey of a thousand miles must begin with a single step.
But yesterday, things changed.
Two days ago there were two dead sofas on the strip of grass next to the street outside the rental house at the northeast corner of Erie Street and Utica Street, across the street from Dan Kuhn’s house.
But yesterday, when I walked by the same spot, the two dead sofas were gone. When I looked around, I found that both sofas had been moved from the strip of grass to the dumpster on the other side of the house.
They were sitting at the back of the driveway right in front of the dumpster, which was overflowing with garbage. Today, they were gone and the pile of garbage on top of and around the dumpster was gone too.
When I walked home yesterday, I also noticed that a pile of spruce tree limbs had been moved from the strip of grass next to a house on the corner of Monroe and Utica Streets, to the lawn of the house, in accordance with the provisions of the Village Code.
This kind of thing has never happened before in Brockport. In the past, when people put garbage, dead furniture, and piles of tree limbs out by the curb, they stay there all week.
There seem to be only two possibilities, either a miracle happened or possibly the new code enforcement office stepped in to get the garbage and tree limbs removed, in accordance with the Code.
Granted, the big blue garbage can, the pile of garbage, and the dead television are still on the strip of grass by the curb on Clinton Street behind the rental house at 8 Utica Street.
But at least there has been progress: one step at a time.