There are a few changes going on in my life, chiefly a new (ish) job, moving in with my girlfriend and soon we’ll be house hunting. The beginning of a new year gives me a good reason to sit back and do a bit of planning and thinking about the way I am heading. What do I want from life and how do I go about getting it. With the financial trouble that providing the newspapers with fresh doomsday headlines almost every day it occurred to me that it’s time for a rebalance. The commercialised and consumer centric society has had it’s day while the retailers were wailing about the public not spending “enough” this Christmas I was glad that the holiday season may return to being that, rather than the buying season it has become. So the retailers may go out of business, millions of jobs get lost. How can we cope? How about doing it ourselves? Tania and I are growing a few vegetables now and when we do buy a house we’re going to dedicate a large chunk of garden to feeding ourselves. It’s green and economical. My parents are doing the same after years of having an unproductive compost heap they now grow a full range of veges and my younger brothers are taking up fishing. This doesn’t quite stack up to Ayumi’s ideal of living in a fully self-sustainable community but it’s a good step along the way.
There are obviously people out there who are further down the track. My good friends The Noodleheads are two of those and have recently pledged to buy nothing new for a year, except essentials for hygiene & safety (think toothpaste and brake fluid). I’d like to get to that stage but with the potential for owning my first house this year and not having a lot of kitchen wear I doubt I’d be able to keep to the pledge. I can still do my part. I cycle to work now and only use my girlfriends’ car vary sparingly, thus reduction the amount of pollution I cause. I have only bought two shirts and a few pairs of socks in the last year, it’s not like I’m growing and my trousers haven’t quite worn out yet. I’m reusing shopping bags and those plastic boxes that (my flatmates’) takeaways come in and our recycling bin is filled quicker than the refuse one.
When we do get our house you can expect a few posts on the measures we’ll be installing to lower our impact on the planet and our wallets. Water troughs for the vegetable garden. If only solar panels were cleaner and cheaper to produce. I’d love to drop of the grid.