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Very Long Walks to "Pay" With PET Bottles – II

To finally continue from where I left off, on November 20 I got up at 11 AM, feeling rather sleepy but wanting to get there earlier, so I won’t be there Friday evening. It was 1:10 PM when I left, and the problem was that I started feeling the need to pee again shortly after that, so I considered making a detour to the mall at Obor, but eventually committed to holding it in until that other one I had used the day before, and once I made that choice I also decided to use another variant of the route, in that Obor area, about 100 meters longer but simpler. Had also taken a can with me, to drop it off in a recycling bin, and could only do so at the entrance of that mall I went in again to pee, since I hadn’t passed by any others on the way there, which I found quite shocking. But by then I was in a quite desperate situation, so it was a real relief that I managed to make it, and the rest of the trip was mostly uneventful, the only thing I made a mental note of being seeing three apples on the sidewalk, one looking like it had struck quite hard but the other two looking really good, and like they had just been placed there, which struck me as odd. Considered picking them up, but decided against it, though I kept the spot in mind and had another look on the way back, the even stranger thing being that I saw one of them still there, albeit on the street at that point and looking like it had been knocked around a few times.
Either way, reached Carrefour without any other issues, but when I dropped off the bottles, the girl told me to write my name and number on the card myself, saying they had been told to no longer write themselves, in case they’d make mistakes or the handwriting’s hard to read. I said my handwriting’s worse, and was also wondering about handing the pen to everyone under the current circumstances, but she said those were the instructions, nothing she could do. So I did that and went inside just after 3:30 PM, getting four Kapia peppers, weighing a total of 464 grams, four Bianca peppers, weighing 404 grams, four apples, weighing 527 grams, four beets, weighing 463 grams, two leeks, which were really flimsy and only weighed a total of 104 grams, and two cabbages, weighing 2.494 kg even if the girl who was there picked the smallest one that was left as one of them. Then I checked the expiring products and grabbed something sweet from there, and also got some potatoes. There was an unpleasant, and potentially concerning, moment as I was picking the potatoes though, an old man who was barely moving coughing when he approached me, then getting on my other side when I turned away, starting to pick through the potatoes as well and coughing again, right next to me, before walking away, making me walk away as well, not wanting to stay in that area just then. Also considered dropping that sweet thing back and grabbing another, since it had been on the potatoes when he had coughed, but it was in a plastic box, so I eventually kept it, went back for the potatoes and checked out. Then I again spent quite some time arranging everything in the backpack, took another toilet break and was out just before 4:30 PM.
Had no more problems with the route on the way back, the one possibly notable moment having to do with a call I received, from someone from USR who said that I’m listed as a supporter in their records and asked whether I’ll vote and, if so, if I’ll still vote for them. And when I said I will vote but it’s unlikely to be for them, she asked why and in return I asked if that’s actually a serious question, considering what’s been going on in that party recently. Felt like a missed opportunity as soon as I hung up, since there was a lot I’d have wanted to say, but it’s not like it’d have done any good and they clearly can’t be a solution anymore, so it doesn’t really matter.
Back to the walk back, I pushed, wanting to get back by 7 PM, for the ski jumping. Saw when I got back that I had only carried a little over 8 kg, but my back and shoulders weren’t happy, actually feeling like it was going to be quite a problem as I was approaching Obor, only managing to make the muscles loosen up a bit after getting past Iancului, and my spine continuing to feel like something wasn’t right in one spot. But I made it in time, just after 6:55 PM, and despite again feeling that I was about to piss myself by that point, also bought a slice of carrot cake from that place that didn’t have any both times I had tried before. Had considered another place as well, but left that for the next day and just got that slice then, which seemed very expensive at first but was large enough for me to cut it in two, making the price quite normal when compared to two cakes from other confectioneries. Not impressed with the taste, however, so I struck that place off my list as a result.
Counted the plastic bottles that were left while watching ski jumping, realizing that, even with dad also going with me once, as planned, I’ll still need to go every day, a few actually being left even so, assuming they were going to accept everything. Then I took a bath and got in bed a bit after 10:20 PM, but while I fell asleep quickly, by 11:10 PM I was awake again and couldn’t get back to sleep, despite staying in bed until almost 12:20 AM. Only got back in bed at 5:20 AM, and my heartbeat suddenly became irregular again as I tried to sleep on my belly or left side, though things improved when I turned on my right side.

The following day, the alarm was only set to ring at 3 PM, for safety, but I meant to wake up around 2 PM, 2:30 PM at most, and I guess that worried me when I woke up around 1 PM, so if I fell back to sleep at all it was for mere minutes until I eventually got up at 1:45 PM. Felt way better though, and was out just after 4 PM, again being in a quite desperate situation by the time I reached that other mall and could pee, though that time the situation repeated itself at the destination as well. So I first entered that mall at 6:10 PM, rushing in through the first entrance and being relieved to see toilets nearby, just barely making it even so, then going out again to drop off the bottles, having another little chat with that girl, and returning inside 6:25 PM.
Got four Kapia peppers, weighing a total of 408 grams, four Bianca peppers, weighing 422 grams, four apples, weighing 471 grams, and four squashes, weighing 634 grams, but then found myself rather at a loss, with just cucumbers, carrots and parsnip roots left. Eventually asked for cucumbers, but they were really tiny, so four felt like a waste of a reward, but the girl gave me six, weighing 237 grams. And then I had a quick look at the expiring things and bread, but found nothing interesting, so I left without any purchases, arranged everything in the backpack, went again to the toilet and was out just before 6:55 PM.
With that pressing need not returning on the way back, I tried another alternative route in the Obor area, realizing that it was another possibility, then stopped at the confectionery I had decided against getting something from the previous day, just grabbing one thing, sort of meaning to reward them for being open until 9 PM every day when nearly everything else was closed as I passed that evening, those other places usually closing at 8 PM even on weekdays, and possibly even earlier on Saturday. Of course, later noticed that they may close a bit earlier than the listed time, but they’re still open later than the other places.
Was back at 9:10 PM, not weighing what I had carried since it clearly didn’t weigh much and the way back had felt just like a simple walk. Then I had a piece of homemade chocolate brought by dad and an apple before showering, but cleaning after dad cooked and doing one more thing I had to do meant it was past 3:05 AM when I finally started eating dinner, and 3:45 AM when I continued in my room, having just eaten a bit until then, spending quite some time getting as much as possible of some cheese dad had brought off the bottom and sides of the thing he had brought it in.

The next day I meant to really wake up at 3 PM and leave at 5 PM, but the neighbors woke me up with drilling just after 10:30 AM. Might have woken me up once even earlier, as I seemed to remember something as if in a dream and dad also said they started around 9 AM, but if so I fell right back to sleep then, while that time I woke up completely and decided to cut my losses. Didn’t make tea though, same as on the first day, hoping I won’t need to pee quite so badly on the way, but nevertheless only left at 1:20 PM and it took me a few more minutes to actually leave the building, since I saw the Kaufland catalog on my way out, actually placed in our mailbox too, and had a quick look through it.
Checked another confectionery on the way, again using the variant of the route tried the previous evening, but just to see what was available, considering returning to it on the way back. Then, even without tea, the situation still became quite urgent by the time I reached that mall, and that was 1:28 after leaving, making it the slowest time I’m aware of, with the possible exception of the first day, when I didn’t check. But I had also gotten confused on the way then, losing time, while that day I was just slow and feeling sleepy. Either way, the trip’s most memorable, and quite scary, moment came after crossing the road at the intersection that’s after that mall, when I saw what looked like a mask in a puddle of blood, with large drops around it as well. Didn’t stick around to get a better look, cleared the area right away and crossed earlier on the way back to avoid that place entirely, but that was certainly what it looked like at first glance.
Either way, had also taken a wine and a vinegar bottle of the kind which had been rejected the previous year, and after allowing someone else to ask a couple of questions before putting in the bottles I knew were going to be accepted, I showed them to the girl, after having asked her about them the day before. But she said she had only been told to reject stuff like detergent or shampoo bottles, so I had 22 bottles, but of course could only get the usual 20 rewards. Not that I’d have really known what to use additional rewards for, since I went inside that mall just after 3:55 PM, took another toilet break before going in Carrefour and once I did get there realized I should have rushed straight in instead, as the two people who were ahead of me, being together but having brought enough to be allowed to pick 20 rewards each, rather cleared things, getting four of the six celery roots, which were large but without leaves, and eight of the 12 leeks. So I got the remaining two celery roots, weighing exactly 2.2 kg, the remaining four leeks, weighing 476 grams, two cabbages, weighing 2.469 kg, four Kapia peppers, weighing 421 grams, four Bianca peppers, weighing 372 grams, and four parsnips, weighing 377 grams. So I cleared two categories, and think a total of six different things were left for the next person, leaving them with little choice if they’d have also brought 20 bottles. There was nobody else after me at the time though, so I also took a moment to thank the girl for the additional cucumbers she had given me the day before.
Got some more cat food after that, again spent a long time arranging everything in the backpack, went to the toilet one more time, wanting to make sure I’ll be fine on the way back, and went out just before 4:55 PM. That should have just given me enough time to go to a tiny bakery, or at least a place selling bread and bakery products, on the way back, so I rushed even if my shoulders were hurting again and my spine gave me further cause for concern, just passed by that confectionery I had checked out on the way there… And did it all for nothing. Had checked the schedule on the way there and that place was supposed to close at 7 PM on Sunday, I was at the door at 6:55 PM, but found it locked and dark, and it wasn’t even as if they had just closed and were cleaning or something of that sort, since there was nobody inside, so they must have closed quite some time earlier. So I didn’t get anything for myself that day and was back just before 7:20 PM, having carried 11 kg. Only went to take a nap around 11 PM though, falling asleep right away but waking again just after midnight, needing to pee again and feeling rather out of it, and hot.

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