I found this Macbook in TMR back in September. It was missing a battery and a charger. A friend of mine had the same model, making it easy to test without investing any money. The computer worked fine, and I ordered the necessary parts on eBay for around 55$ – a great deal, since this model typically sells for around 200-225$.
I’m enjoying life with a laptop. I’ve made a habit of taking it to the café on Mondays (Tuesday this time! I was too busy yesterday) and writing these posts over sandwich and a latté. It’s a nice treat for me, and I appreciate getting out of the house more often. This may sound silly to those who have had laptops for years, but this is my first one! Well, actually it’s my second (both of which have come from the trash), though my first was buggy even at its best and I never felt comfortable taking it out.
This machine definitely isn’t “top of the line” anymore, but it works perfectly fine for what I use it for. Apple laptops are the best in the business, and I expect this will last me a good while.
Last week began fairly well. I went on Sunday night to a spot in Cote St-Luc that had been productive the few weeks prior. (I forgot to snap a photo, however, so I had to use the one from last week).
There were two large garbage bags totally full of family photo albums, most of which seemed to be from the 70s and 80s. I brought them home on the off-chance that there was something older or otherwise cool in there, but there wasn’t much. It seems like a shame, though these people might have just taken too many photos, like some people do today. I put them back on the curb to meet their fate.
The most notable finds were these two stone carvings. The one on the left is made from some type of green rock and weighs a ton. It looks to me like a three person group hug, though it’s hard to tell that from the photo. The one on the right is made from soapstone. I bet these were expensive originally, but I don’t think there’s much resale value unless the green rock is somehow valuable. If anyone knows what type of stone it is, let us know in the commments!
Otherwise, I saved: a nice vintage toolbox; a heat gun; a bag of tea lights; a candle-holder from Israel; a magazine holder; several small picture frames; and a lettering set.
On Wednesday I decided to make a special trip to check out Pointe-Claire. It’s pretty far away, and not somewhere I want to go regularly because it takes a lot of time and gas money just to get there. However, it was nice to explore the area, and it’s always good to explore different places – it gives you a better chance at coming across a really worthwhile spot.
There were four bags in front of this house, all of which clanged like kitchenwares when kicked. I saved a bunch of dishes, though none of it was particularly notable outside of a large crystal glass pitcher. The best part for me was the change sitting at the bottom of the bags. Much of it was foreign coins (mostly from Mexico) but there was another 4.24$ in Canadian currency, including one loonie.
I came across this spot a little later on. Inside an open box was a collection of sewing magazines, most of which were from the 40s and 50s (but also one from the 20s). The coolest was titled “Make and mend for victory,” which was published in 1942 during WWII. Otherwise, I brought home: a cute glass dish; some patches; a wooden box with some hermetically sealed smoked salmon inside (not sure if I’m brave enough to try the salmon, but at least the box is nice); a little portable mirror, one side of which features a photo (probably from the 1950s) of a museum in Prince Rupert, B.C.); and a cute painting of horses by someone named Irène.
I also saw this cool old organ. It’s a shame this was curbed as it appeared to be in good condition, but there was no way I was getting it in the car!
Going out of my way again, I went to Lachine on Thursday night. It’s a nice neighborhood with lots of potential for good garbage, but came away with only a pair of rollerblades. I was feeling really confident I’d find something, but as usual the location of good garbage is impossible to predict. It was a good reminder not to take gut feelings very seriously – I would have been better off spending that time relaxing.
Still, I wanted to make another find – my blog post was looking like it was going to be pretty bare! I decided to do an “old school” run by bike and trailer to the eastern part of the Plateau on Friday evening. I used to do the route religiously, every Tuesday and Friday. However, I’ve barely done it in recent months – especially since the car era began – despite it being only a short bike ride away and the source of many a good find. It simply fell out of favor, mostly because it has a tendency to boom and bust (but mostly bust). Still, I felt like exploring the neighborhood, hoping the unpredictability of garbage would provide me something nice. I also felt like biking for a change.
The run was mostly bare, as I sort of expected given that it was still the middle of the month. However, I did come across a spot that provided what I was looking for – something to talk about. There were several bags in this one area near Fabre and Mont-Royal that contained some miscellaneous junk, some of which seemed to have come from a shed.
I looked in one of the bags and spotted a nice pair of virtually brand-new CCM Alpine skates.
Upon pulling them out, I noticed a little surprise underneath.
It was a plastic container full of change, conveniently taped up so that I wouldn’t have to pick around the bottom of the bag to collect it all. There was 14.46$ in total, including a loonie. I find change often enough that I got a TD bank account specifically to use their free change-sorting machines, but it usually only comes a few coins or dollars at a time. Oddly enough, both times I’ve found large collections of change it’s been in the Plateau, the other time being a jar with around 25$ inside that I came across nearly a year ago on a cold, January night. It was only a couple blocks away too, come to think of it.
Edit: I almost forgot about another collection of change, again just a few few blocks away, that I found while walking with my mom last June! That pile totaled 13.82$. For the record, I think this is more of a strange coincidence than proof that Plateau residents throw out their change in droves.
I don’t really get people throwing out their change, especially loonies. It seems even a bit offensive, particularly in the Plateau where this person could have walked half a block and given it to someone in need. Regardless, it made my trip worthwhile! I also recovered a couple of slides, which I’ll likely leave on the curb for someone else to find.
Last week’s garbage sales (November 10 – November 16)
-Merlin (vintage electonic game): to a roommate for 5$. I didn’t ask for anything, but he insisted on giving me 5$ for it. I always accept money when people insist more than once. He might sample its very 1980s sounds for use in music. Found in TMR (but not mentioned on the blog) two weeks ago.
-Vintage sterling silver rosary: on eBay for 54$. Found in Verdun back in May.
-Vintage brass ashtray (Simon Arzt cigarettes): on eBay for 30$. Found in TMR December of last year.
-Shimano bike shoes: on eBay for 45$. From a spot in Rosemont that provided a bunch of great bike stuff, including a few bike locks with keys included.
-Signed photo of Marlene Dietrich: on eBay for 38$. Found in April with the Nazi passport in the Golden Square Mile.
-Quaker Oats “Big Inch” deed of land (promotion): on eBay for 22$. Found nearly a year ago in the Plateau. I’m glad to see this go, as I procrastinated about listing it for quite some time before doing so this week.
-Small change: processed in the TD bank change machine for 31.90$. Includes the totals found this week.
Total: 225.90$, 5789.65$ since May 18th. A pretty good week! eBay sales seem to be picking up a bit as the holidays near.
I felt inspired to get some jewelry up on Etsy this week, after largely neglecting the store for quite some time. I started to remember how much money I used to make off it, and also don’t find some things (like guessing the shipping costs) as stressful as I used to. Check out the link to my Etsy store below if you’re curious – the top 12 items are all new.
“Big Inch” deed of land (SOLD!)
The Source Book encyclopedia – complete set
Canadian Municipal Manual, 1917 book
Canadian Commercial Corporations, 1916 book
Set of early 1900s Quebec law books
Samsung Galaxy phone (locked to Virgin)
iPhone 4 (for parts, repair)
Lot of 3 Blackberrys (for parts, repair)
Lot of 27 Japanese travel brochures
Note: I offer local buyers a (often significant) discount on all eBay and Etsy prices. Email me for more details.
If you have a question, see anything that you’re interesting in buying, or to just want to say hello feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I also enjoy reading your comments!