My quest to help save this planet was doomed to fail right from the start. “Put the lunch meat and the cheese in my containers, no plastic bags, please,” and with a determined, but not confident smile I handed her my food containers, yet she didn’t take them.
Why, oh why, is it so complicated to do the right thing sometimes?
The lady at the deli didn’t know what to do with me and called the manager. He wasn’t sure what to do either, so I enlightened them both and shared my simple plan with them. “I am trying to cut down on plastic products and waste. Please, cut the lunch meat and the cheese, weigh it, print the sticker, put the lunch meat and the cheese in my storage containers, and put the sticker on the bottom.” My self-checkout experience has helped me to become an expert on where to place the price stickers.
Purchasing lunchmeat and cheese from the deli not wrapped in plastic bags. Voila, a small baby step was taken in the right direction. Theoretically!
Practically it turned out to be much more complicated. My containers were inspected, and I was checked out as well -just not as obvious. I could tell I had failed the inspection. The look they gave me showed me they were not impressed with me, and rather annoyed by my request.
We went back and forth for a while, and in the end, I won when I asked them to wrap my deli meats and cheeses in paper instead of plastic. That seemed too much of a hassle and all of a sudden my containers were accepted. If you aim to have a reputation to be a crazy older lady, that’s how to do it.
I read about it in an article in a European newspaper magazine. A woman had successfully reduced her trash to 1/3 and lives a plastic-free life. I had borrowed some of her ideas -of course only the ones that didn’t seem to be too inconvenient.
So far I am not willing to be the climate change superhero. I just tried to put my mind at ease, because that’s what we normally do. We give a little, so we can say we weren’t that bad.
Change is complicated! Change is inconvenient! But change is necessary!
Transitions and adjustments are often not as difficult as we initially think. Everything is possible if we only pull together in the same direction.
It is time to save the world
and our future…
What will it take to stir us into a new way of being? Intellectually we ‘get it’ and yet we still cannot close
the gap between our knowledge and our day-to-day behavior. I know I have a hard time. We need to close that chasm between cognition and action, we need a different sort of provocation. We need something to electrify us, move us, spur us on, fire us up.
Lunch meat bought in the store, transport in my own reusable containers! It doesn’t hurt, it just takes a bit of effort! No more plastic straws, no more to-go cups, no more store-bought water bottles but filtered tap water. Small changes can add up.
This year, two of my blogging friends have made an enormous step forward. Both live in California where the draught has been a problem, where water usage for the lawns had been restricted -and rightfully so. Debra and Rosaliene Bacchus both have created beautiful and very interesting yards and gardens. Both have shown great thoughtfulness in planning and designing. The yards are attractive and colorful, different perhaps, but in a very nice way. The yard of the future? Possibly.
Their efforts have paid off, it was worth it. And here I am complaining about the funny looks I got when I asked to have my husband’s lunch meat to be packed in a container that I had brought from home.
So much action on their end, hardly any on mine.
Climate change is not just an issue for politics and business. It affects us all, and each and every one of us can make a difference through small things in everyday life.
The amount of trash just the two of us produce is insane. One full garbage can every week. We use fabric totes and reusable bags to carry our groceries, yet inside there are plastic bags for all the fruits and vegetables we buy, bags for the lunchmeats and the cheeses, everything individually wrapped If you aim to have a reputation to be a crazy older lady
I drink at least five bottles of water a day, store-bought, pure mineral water -that’s what the label says. We have a mini fridge, it’s always filled with sodas and ice-cold water. It’s convenient to just go and open another bottle.
The store-bought water is going to be replaced. Now I own ten 16-oz BPA-free bottles that I will fill up with filtered tap water every night. Giving up the plastic bottles cost us around $60 for filters and bottles. That’s not bad at all, that’s what we spend on store-bought water in eight weeks.
I know I will forget to fill up my water bottles now and then, and cleaning them every day will feel odd at first.
Accepting climate change is problematic because if we accept it, we have to change.
Sometimes I wonder. Why should I care, I am only one person but I also believe that one person can make a difference!
There are a lot of crazy women and men just like me out there, who might be stubborn enough to at least try to be more conscious with their everyday purchases.
I have so much to learn! I am only beginning.