Monday, 4 February 2013

Easy Green

Some weeks it feels almost impossible to be green, others it just seems to come naturally. Thankfully this week has been the latter with green possibilities cropping up all over the place.

Travelling back from London to Exeter at the start of the week I took the train. I don't think I'd ever consider driving that trip, train is quicker, easier and I don't have to find parking at the end. However, on some train journeys I do think longingly of a quiet car journey with my choice of radio rather than a packed, noisy carriage with no signal. But this trip I felt I was really being rewarded for my good green behavior. With a young-person railcard I traveled home for about £20 on a relatively busy train but each seat had a screen on the back so you could watch TV programs for free through your journey! This luxury was amazing and a Doctor Who episode and half a murder mystery  later I almost missed my stop because I was so absorbed in the entertainment. If more trains were like this I bet more people would travel by rail.

I also found several signs that green produce is becoming more mainstream. Whilst sipping a nice cool fruit beer and watching the rugby this weekend I noticed that not only was it organic but it was also produced here in the UK. I do often seek out local and organic drinks but this time I'd just grabbed the first yummy looking bottle from the shelf so it's nice to discover more of these products around. And I could keep drinking with a smug smile on my face for my eco-friendly beverage as well as the England-Scotland score. The (Edinburgh born) fiance was less smug about the score but he was pleased that he'd easily found some Scottish beer to drink during the game. It's probably much easier to find UK produced ale than any other type but it's something we should celebrate. In modern times it can be so hard to find local produce that when there's something that's easy to source locally we often overlook it. So I raise a glass to all yummy local beers.

Another chance green purchase (this time a little more pre-planned) was our new sofa bed. Furniture that does two jobs means saving space and also cutting down on what we consume because we don't buy two items, just one. While we were deciding on the sofa the lady in the shop explained the different types of fillings for the mattress/cushions and I was excited to hear her say that the filling was recycled jeans. How fantastic! I'm always looking for ways to use up old jeans and it makes me really happy to know that my comfy new sofa is filled with reused old fabrics.  Again, an unexpected green item without looking for one.

As well as all this lovely chance green-ing this week I've had a couple of lovely wildlife moments too. I've seen the best two views of  goldcrests I've ever had both when sitting in a car park looking absently out into a hedge. These tiny little birds are just gorgeous and the fact that I have no memory of ever seeing one before this January means that any sighting of them makes it a very exciting day for me. If I ever need a little boost to remind me why nature is worth saving just show me one of these.

I doubt I'll get any goldcrests (here's hoping) on my new bird feeder but I'm still looking forward to discovering what wildlife is around locally to me now it's up. A stick-on ledge feeder with a mix of seeds and  meal worms is now attached to our spare room window. Nothing's been sighted yet but it has only been up 24 hours. Robins should love the meal worms and other locally spotted wildlife such as blue tits, great tits and long tailed tits might happen upon the food too. Perhaps I'll even finally succeeds in attracting a goldfinch to one of my feeders! Buying my feeder and food from the RSPB is also a good green purchase, because the money will go to all their conservation projects, so I'm helping the birds twice.

So, a great green week. I wonder what the next one will hold...

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