We had two gift vouchers remaining from Christmas that were due to run out in May – one for a popular stationary store and one for Myer. We ummed and ahhed over what we should spend them on, as we couldn’t allow them to go to waste. Of all the ideas the only ones we had that seemed to make sense, or were justifiable, were to spend them on Little Fearse.
At the stationary store we purchased her a new lunchbox. She didn’t need a new lunchbox. The one we purchased at the op shop is still going strong. We were just at a loss – we didn’t need anything at the shop. It was an empty kind of purchase and it felt like we were cheating on BNN and ourselves.
At Myer we bought Little Fearse a winter jacket (much more expensive than we’d usually get) and a winter top that will probably fit her this winter and next. Of course both items of clothing are ridiculously cute. I did get some pleasure out of this purchase because they were things Little Fearse will get a lot of wear out of. Although we can easily purchase clothes for her second hand it’s nice to have the opportunity to buy her something special. It sort of tickled the consumer in me in the way the previous purchase hadn’t.
Being at the shopping centre (for only the second time this year) was unlovely. The visuals there are like an assault if you haven’t been for a while. When you’re at a shopping centre already it becomes kind of second nature to pick up something here and something there. Since we’re not buying anything new we ended up purchasing coffee and snacks we didn’t need.
My tuna hand roll came in a plastic box with a little plastic tray for the wasabi and a tiny plastic bottle of soy sauce, held together with a rubber band. I felt really guilty about how much packaging was involved in my purchase of one tiny hand roll. I wished I’d had the forethought to at least get them to leave off the plastic container. They had paper bags, which would have been marginally better. Feeling ill at ease about the amount of stuff left over when I’d finished eating I tucked the container into the bottom of Little Fearse’s pram figuring I’d try and find a way to reuse some of it later.
The wind was ferocious. While we were unloading the pram the wind stole the sushi box and rubbish and whipped it off across the car park. “Oh no!!” I cried. Big Poppa got ready to chase after, thinking it was his steak that had flown away, or one of Little Fearse’s new purchases. As I saw the box sadly crushed under a car wheel then lift over the edge of the upstairs car park wall I said “Never mind, it was just my sushi box.” I felt kind of relieved in a disgusting way. I no longer had to come up with some fancy way to reuse it. And I felt guilty, too. If it had been one of our purchases or even a $5 note we would have worked hard to retrieve it. Instead I just watched the little box float away.
I wish it was easier – that we didn’t have to work so hard to be good and ecological. Isn’t that terrible? I know that it is true, though, that if it were easier we’d all be much more willing to recycle more or purchase organic food more often or try harder to reduce our waste. It makes me sad to know that even though our little family feels like we’ve come such a long way we still have so much (SO MUCH) further to go. We’re really just a few steps along the pathway to becoming more aware people. A few tiny steps.