Mini post! Seven things I found a month ago


Around a month ago I got a text from a friend informing me of a big pile of trash in the Plateau. I went to check it out and found myself facing a massive pile about the size of two parking spaces. It looked like someone had emptied an apartment but saved the best things for themselves.

I heard some people discussing the waste while smoking cigarettes outside a nearby restaurant. I overheard someone saying that the pile was bankruptcy related. That’s a bit sad if true. It seemed like whoever owned this stuff had lived there for quite some time.

A truck pulled up to the pile not long after I showed up. Three guys came out and started hunting for scrap metal. They got a fair bit, including the metal bed frame on the left hand side of the photo. I handed them whatever metal I came across. I like helping scrap metal collectors do their work because everything they take ends up being recycled.

A few other scavengers (of the opportunist type) came by to see what the fuss was all about. I gave one of them a big jar full of buttons.

I didn’t find anything super valuable. I saved a few things though, including:


… a crucifix adorned with mother of pearl (two pieces of mother of pearl are unfortunately missing);


… a tiny creamer, measuring maybe 1.5″ tall;


… a thimble;


… a plastic visor from Canada’s Wonderland, an amusement park in Toronto;


… a weird looking old thermometer (it looks like it was once stapled to something else);


… and a rug. It looked beautiful but smelled super musty. I took it anyways, thinking that it might be salvageable. It’s been slung over my friend Sarah’s back porch railing ever since, in hopes that the fresh air and sunlight would fix things with time. It’s definitely gotten a lot better, but it still smells too much to use. If anyone has any tips on getting out that smell, let me know!


However, my favourite find here was this cute folk art painting. It’s quite small – maybe 6″ long – and is painted directly on a piece of wood. It might be hard to tell from this angle, but the bottom piece (including the house) is actually a different piece of wood that’s nailed to the other from the back. It gives the piece a different sort of depth. It’s hard to tell exactly how old it is, but I wouldn’t be surprised if it dates back to the 1920s or 1930s.

I plan on sharing more of these smaller posts going forward. Look for my usual weekly edition later in the week – it’ll be a good one!

13 thoughts on “Mini post! Seven things I found a month ago”

  1. There are a few things you can try for the musty rug, I remember reading about a few remedies, vinegar and baking soda solution to remove musty smells and mildew, tea tree solution, and I also temper something about vodka. Try typing ‘musty rug’ in pinterest. Good luck!

  2. Put the rug in a clean trash bag, seal it and leave it in a freezer for days, even weeks. I’ve had good luck with this method with furs and fake furs.

  3. It’s so nice that you help other salvagers, i.e., the scrap metal collectors. *hugs*

    Check this link, re: getting the smell out of that nice carpet.

    Love the vintage thermometer, and the wording on the right-hand side, i.e., Blood Heat, etc. The “F” at the top stands for Fahrenheit. This page says such thermometers usually sell for $150+. So … a pretty sweet find. 🙂

    Love the little folk art painting. It’s charming.

    I give you a two thumbs up on the mini posts. 🙂

  4. I love your mini-posts.Please do them more often.I visited Angers street in Cote St.Paul last Friday morning and found tons of interesting things by accident in the trash there.I got delayed to a friend’s house because one treasure find led to another and I started checking the trash and recycling all around there.I found a beautiful undamaged leather briefcase,working roller skates,a plastic figurine of Shenandoah
    and some beautiful Dick Tracy comic books in a recycling bin .Angers street,Maricourt street,Biencourt street ,Holy Cross street and Du Seve street are all worth exploring Friday morning.Two months ago I found a lot of treasures there too.Cote St.Paul north of Laurendeau street gets poorer.

  5. I listen to CDs and audio cassettes.I rescue discarded CD racks and cassette racks/towers from the trash to arrange my own collection,not for reselling.

  6. I would try baking soda first. Baking soda is wonderful for getting bad odours out. When I moved into this apartment, the tenant was happy to leave me his fridge and stove. I soon found out why when I opened the fridge. It smelled like a corpse. I have never smelled something so bad in my life, literally like death. I bought several boxes of baking soda, opened them and put them in the fridge. A couple days later the smell was completely gone.

    For the carpet, I’d put it in a garbage bag with a couple boxes of baking soda. I’d roll up the carpet a bit, put it in the bag, try to get it to stand upright against a wall or something, put the two boxes of opened baking soda on the bottom, seal it up. Wait a couple days.

    You can also just sprinkle baking soda all over it, but it’s a bit of a drag if you don’t have a super heavy duty vacuum cleaner. It will feel ‘grainy’ when you walk on it.

    Good luck!

  7. Love your posts! It’s unbelievable that you can make a living doing that!

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