So yesterday I went out for lunch with a friend and her little un, and it wasn’t until halfway through my fruits of the forest and basil smoothie (recommended) that I realised I was drinking out of a straw!! I’d totally forgotten to mention it! I must have made an angry face or gesture, because the kind lady rushed over to check if it was too sour etc… when I explained, she said a customer had nearly burst into tears last week when given a straw, so it’s not just me! #saynotostraws
I don’t normally do a huge amount of eating out, so I guess I’m probably just not in the habit, but it was pretty strange that I didn’t realise until I’d drunk half the smoothie. I think I was too busy trying to work out if it was soya or dairy yoghurt!!
After lunch (and great chats about running and sustainable living, including a link to my friend’s friend’s super interesting Nothing New Year blog), we went to the greengrocer’s. I got pretty overwhelmed by the packaging-free options – highlights were plastic-free grapes and white nectarines. Still no unpackaged green leaves in sight though! For loose items, the shop uses paper bags, which is obv better than the alternative, but I think the shop assistant got a bit blindsided when I asked to use my own reused tattered paper bag…so much so that she immediately crumpled it up and threw it away! I felt that I had to be quite assertive in insisting she use my other tattered paper bag, and no I didn’t want one of the new and shiny ones.
These are the kind of moments where a former me would have just caved and gone for the conventional, convenient option, especially when I’m doing something against the norm and there’s a queue behind me…in fact, I probably wouldn’t have asked in the first place. There’s something oddly empowering about tiny moments of insisting on your rights as a consumer to not-take-the-thing-that’s-costing-them-more-money-dammit! A paper bag isn’t plastic (obvious statement is obvious), but it’s still another unnecessary item that has taken energy and resources to produce.
So that’s my challenge to you for next time you go to a shop, a cafe, an event – say no to something that’s free, but you don’t really need, and see how it makes you feel.
For more on my Plastic Challenge, check out my Instagram account, @adventureandcake, which I’ve found is more suited to pictures of meals, shopping and my short attention span 💖