I was recently at Kunara Organic Cafe (well worth a visit) and couldn't help but notice the set of shelves in the photograph. It reminded me of the significant amount of waste that we produce as a result of the lifestyles that many of us lead. It reminded me that while a specific item had reached it's 'use by date' and could no longer saitisfactorily perform its 'intended' task, it may still be possible to 'retask' it - adapt it to be used for some other purpose.
In this instance, it was a simple thing - an old ladder that clearly could no longer be used safely as a ladder. This ladder with only slight modification, had been 'retasked' as a bookshelf; a bookshelf that not only is functional, but also has character. Just as importantly, this old ladder did not end up on a rubbish heap; rather it had its life extended by potentially many years.
So, what does this all mean?
Before you consign old materials and equipment to the rubbish bin, and even before you add it to the recycling bin; consider if it can be 'retasked'. Consider if it can be used (perhaps with slight modification) for some alternative function.
I would love to hear your stories of other "retasking" that you might have seen, or even performed yourself. Please share your examples for everyone else to enjoy.