I Really Want to Call This “The Town Dump Library”
Ashford Transfer Station, Ashford
I wish I could remember where I first came across information regarding this wonderful oasis in the midst of, well, trash. Refuse. Garbage. Junk.
Because I really want to know how it was billed. Obviously it piqued my interest enough to note it and remember it and ultimately visit, take pictures, and now write about it. (And you can be sure I’ll be visiting it again in the future, unless you all ruin it for the rest of us non-Ashford residents.)
I have learned that calling transfer stations “dumps” is an insult to transfer stations, and doing so is blatantly wrong. Heck, the Ashford website’s banner for the subpage reads, “Transfer Station (Not a Dump!) To transfer your garbage…” And to be honest, this place was as clean and tidy as you could imagine such a place could be.
I was excited to see what a
town dump transfer station library could possibly be, but get this: it was shut down for over a year due to the pandemic! I had to wait nearly two years from discovery to exploration! I can’t begin to tell you how frustrating this was for me. I drove by the entrance off of Route 74 a few times during that dark period… waiting… wanting… biding my time.
And I wasn’t even sure I’d gain access. After all, residency stickers are required for use of the Transfer Station. Was I actually “using the Transfer Station?” No, but would there be a gated entry? Such mystery. Such anticipation. I was actually prepared to ask the person for special one-time access and would even try to explain why.
As it turned out, I drove right in and followed the signs around the back of the sorting areas and pulled right up to the shed I was seeking. A former resident generously donated several large sheds to be used by locals (and, apparently West Hartford interlopers) to “swap” used goods and books. Is this commonplace? I’ve never lived in a Transfer Station town so I have no idea. It sure seems like something that should exist at every one.
A high quality shed full of free books. (The “goods” sheds were decidedly less interesting to me, as it seemed like nothing more than a bunch of junk.) I have a few free book honeypots around the area, and this one turned out to be worth my time. I didn’t really expect to find much, but I was able to grab books for myself (some of Anthony Bourdain’s lesser known works), Calvin (he loves Guinness World Records), and Damian. I can’t explain why, but Damian loves baking books with pictures and recipes. He will get these for Christmas.
No. I’m not joking. That’s how we do.
I have a fairly large box of books to give to some entity, and now I’m saving it for this place. I owe them a box of my used books I no longer want or need. Again, I honestly don’t know if I was breaking a law, a rule, or just a “hey man, c’mon, you can’t be coming here taking all our colorful baking books” type of thing.
If any of those, I’m sorry. I’m just jealous this exists way up here in Ashford and I hope the locals appreciate it.