An expedition to Villeray

I got up nice and early again to check up on the trash in Villeray, an area north of Jean Talon and before the 40 highway which includes Jarry Park. Apparently it used to be a farming community (with Jarry park being a big field) before urbanization went crazy. I didn’t find too much but there were a few things of interest. First I’ll start with a few things from last night:

A nice old corner desk with a chair. They’re covered in plaster dust, so they were probably sitting around during some renovation. They were in great shape but alas I was too far from home to do anything about it.

An interesting mirror with some cool fake flower things stuck to the front, giving it a third dimension. Again, too far from home to really go out of my way. I did a classic stash job, leaving it somewhere where it was likely to be seen but not likely to be picked up by the garbage trucks. Hopefully it found a good home.

Some random stuff, including a tent (left side). There were some old books too (behind the kitty litter), most of which were about the future of media and the internet and how it relates to commerce. I took the tent, one book, and a book on tapes on the same topic as the above. I haven’t really looked at the tent yet, but if it’s in good shape I’ll give it a wash.

I think there might have been a divorce involved here. In one of the bags was a framed photo of a middle-aged couple.

And now for some stuff from Villeray. This is a typical residential street, featuring some nice old trees and the old row houses that define much of Montreal.

An old computer monitor. It was made by IBM and was marked “Personal Computer Screen” (or something along those lines). It was dated 1980. I carried it along for a while, but when I found more things it became a bit annoying to move around so I left it behind, again in a place where I hope someone will find it.

Anytime I see a closed box in the trash I usually take a look. It seems like there is disproportionately more good stuff in them (and also renovation material scrap, but once you get to know your trash you can spot that stuff a mile away).

In this box were two more boxes and a little CD player thing. I left that somewhere in the hopes that someone else would get it too, even if only for parts. Sometimes I wonder if I’m just littering but I’ll bet my batting average is pretty good on that front.



I ended up meeting a friend of the guy who was throwing this stuff out. He spoke French and a bit of English but we communicated pretty well. He was a pretty nice guy, and he told me the speakers were good but needed some wiring work. I just put it on the Craigslist free section to see if anyone wants them.

The laptop he referred to as a “relic,” which is true. It must be one of the earliest laptops actually – it only has 33 mhz. It has an external floppy disk drive, which is kind of awesome. I plugged it in see if it works but it needs a boot disk (and probably a new operating system). Remember those? Not sure what I’ll do with it yet but it’s kind of fun.

If I’m lucky I’ll find some old operating system floppies in the trash. I’ve found Windows 95 floppies before, but I don’t know if this laptop can handle the power of the 95. I’m thinking Windows 3.1. Or DOS.

That’s all for now!

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7 thoughts on “An expedition to Villeray

  1. Another exploratory mission. Can’t say as I get terribly excited about electronics … but then I’m a dinosaur myself.

  2. Jeffrey says:

    You have great observation and thank you for posting the item about the laptop you found in Villeray.I think you have an even greater chance of finding good stuff in recycling bins than in the trash itself.Occasionally I find very good novels and nonfiction books in recycling bins;once I found very good Cds and pre- taped Polygram audio cassettes with country music from the sixties,Frank Sinatra,Dean Martin and also some newer hard rock
    music.I l took them and listen to that on my old stereo with a cassette deck that a relative gave to me.I love analogue music even if ipods are popular.Check recycling bins too.I live in a very big borough-Ville St.Laurent.Keep posting your finds.I check your blog three or four times every week.

  3. Franco Bemers says:

    Great blog.I am happy you take Saturday off from patrolling for treasures in trash.I want to encourage you on your mission—I hope you check out these streets on garbage pickup day—Basil Routhier ,Grande Allee,and Laverdure all in Ahuntsic between Sauve and Henri Bourassa boulevards.I found a few good things while biking on these streets in summer on trash pickup day or recycling pickup.

  4. tyrone says:

    was there atleast a blender in side the box and wat about the speakers wats up with that work ???????????

  5. Kevin says:

    People generally throw out less stuff during December,January and February because this is not moving season.However,a number of housewives and tenants do spruce up their homes for Christmas and in the process junk knickknacks,old art,music,furniture,etc.I hope your field trips bear this out.Keep up your posts.Look forward to ’em.

  6. […] I give away need repairs, and if put in the right hands could be of use. I guess a good example is the speakers I found last week. A friend of the owner told me they just needed a wiring fix. I have decent […]

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