Above is my contribution to Blue Tuesday.
I was delighted to find this article on the Marie Claire Maison site showing various small living structures: a treehouse, a yurt, and la roulotte immobile (gypsy caravan) to name a few. There is a company in Saint Remy de Provence, Les Verdines, that refurbishes gypsy wagons and sells them. A page on their site reads, "...Provence, a land bearing the footprints of past gypsies..." The footprints. I've been thinking a lot lately about how big my footprint is - my footprint on the earth. How much physical space do I take up, how many resources do I use up, how big of a dent do I make? April 22nd is Earthday. It seems such an absurd notion. Like Mother's Day - one day to honor them - and then what? For the rest of the year go back to taking them for granted?
April is also Use What You Have Month. The gypsies knew how to do this. Yes. I will make the effort. I will say that when I do need something "new", like a pair of pants, a lamp, sheets, etc., I go to a thrift store. There is so much excess across the globe that if all manufacturing ceased today we would have enough stuff to last for generations. This goes for cars as well. Stop making more cars. New cars are inferior to the old anyway. I drive a used Volvo 240 and do my own mechanical work. This Volvo model and the early American cars were built to last. And talk about using what you have...look at how the people of Cuba have been able to keep the American cars from the 1940's and 50's on the road, using a tree sap elixir for brake fluid and fashioning body parts out of scrap metal when need be.
I do try to coordinate my trips to the thrift store so that other errands can be accomplished along the way, or in the same area. I attempt to combine at least three errands in one trip. It's an instinctive practice of mine, to try to cut down on being another car in traffic, another car making noise, another car spewing fumes and using up resources. Best of all, I take public transportation whenever possible; and my son enjoys it so much.
Of course, another huge use of petroleum products is in the making of plastic goods. Resisting the convenience of using plastic food containers for instance, and choosing to use glass instead, not only reduces your use of petroleum products but is also healthier for your body. I know that many of you make your own fabric toys so I won't go into plastic toys. You're already ahead most people on that. Congratulations! In the next post I will write about Utopian Neighborhoods; an idea of mine from a couple of years back, that relates to the books in my typelist called Eco-Home Cleaning.
Having said all of that, I am not a puritan. I make an effort though to tread softly.
I will close by offering up two more "blue" photos. Above is our Russian Blue, NELLA; and below is a vintage car I captured in Paris.