Monday, 29 February 2016

Lent Plastic Challenge: Days 14 - 20

Our tiffin carrier
What with it being a busy week and having settled into my plastic-free life the posts have slowed down a bit.  There have been ups and downs but thankfully more of the latter than the former.

Days 14-17  I continue to struggle with seemingly unavoidable plastic.  There's the hidden variety - the inner coatings of tins in particular.  I imagine they're there to prevent the contents of the tin corroding the metal, which is a good thing, but is it the only solution?  I declined a plastic sheet to protect the tracing paper I bought on Tuesday, but one of the pens came shrink wrapped in plastic film.  The other didn't.  Why the difference?  Then there's the unsolicited plastic, like the straw in the glass of water I ordered in a burger bar on Friday evening.  I didn't need it but it was too late to save it from the bin.   On the other hand I have been reminded that eating waste free results in a healthier diet as most fatty/sugary snacks come wrapped in plastic.

Day 18  We travelled up to London to take part in the Stop Trident march and rally, and needed a plastic free picnic to carry with us.  Mark's bread and cookies in paper bags and apples from our veg box were easy enough.  But the tin of tuna revealed a suspicious looking lining and the paper wrapper on the Ooh! Chocolata bar was backed by something other.  We couldn't buy the bottled drinks I might have chosen.  Fortunately we have a couple of canteens which we filled with water to last us through the day.

When we arrived home late and too tired to cook we were able to use our tiffin container to collect a takeaway from the Thali Cafe, plastic free except for the tiny tub of chutney that came with the starter.

Day 19  There was a shared lunch after Quaker Meeting.  Having spent the previous day in London I hadn't had time to shop for or cook anything to take so I popped in to Lidl on my way.  Supermarkets are shrines to plastic.  It was a struggle to find anything I could buy.  I finally decided on a a bunch of vine tomatoes and an avocado (which turned out to be under ripe!).  It was very depressing to contemplate how much plastic shoppers were buying and how much of it would be in the bin by the end of the day/week.

Top tips
  • Be gentle on yourself.  Living completely plastic-free is a tall order and one which very few of us will ever achieve.  Doing your best is better than doing nothing at all.
  • Avoid supermarkets.
  • Never give up!  

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