A whole month, with a great ambition to use as little single use plastic as possible, 31 days, 744 hours – some of those spent on cycling frantically across London to find stuff without plastic…
So, here’s what I have learnt:
- There is sooo much plastic! I have always considered myself as environmentally conscious and aware. But more than once I actually assumed something was recyclable, put it in the recycling bin and felt I’ve done the right thing. This month I took a closer look at what one can and cannot recycle in my area and it left me feeling somewhat disappointed in myself….
- One can cycle a whole morning from one place to another, quite a bit back and forth, if it’s at the beginning of the challenge. Not sure I would be so determined if that was at the end of the challenge. Particularly, that I didn’t find what I was looking for on that day!
- Sometimes the things that we are looking for so frantically one day, are really easy to find on a different day, should one sit and think for a moment, rather than cycle frantically across the town for a whole morning. I found out that the best (and probably the most expansive…) veg market is around the corner from my work.
- That buying plastic-free can be pretty expensive, mainly because it’s trendy and fancy now 😦
- That buying dairy milk (for my dairy-eating daughters) without plastic is impossible in my part of town. Unless you buy a whole cow and keep in your back yard. Which I couldn’t do, because:
- I don’t have a back yard, and my neighbours may object to me having a cow in our communal garden
- I don’t agree with keeping a cow for milk for ethical reasons
- That I can bake the best toast bread so it comes without plastic now in our home
- That I can grow spinach and kale in a raised bed behind our block. I can then eat what the caterpillars left from their feast…
- That I can attempt to grow lettuce on my balcony for a traveling pigeon to eat it all (!) one early morning. Caterpillars at least leave a bit for humans.
- That making any changes that sticks requires small steps and consistency in forming a new habit. So it’s better to be realistic rather than too ambitious and have a couple of new things that fit into your lifestyle and you’ve mastered it before taking on another change. I have mastered:
- Baking the best soft toast bread
- Making smoothies with spinach and kale caterpillars spared for me
- Buying lettuce from Borough Market for 1 million pounds per head, but without any plastic.
Coz plastic ain’t fantastic 😉