Okay road trip update! Mr. WWW and I took a nice trip through Wyoming, South Dakota and North Dakota to visit my brother and sister in law. There was a lot of beautiful countryside and happy cows, and we got to see Mt Rushmore on the 4th which was pretty neat.
Mr. WWW and I were able to bake some yummy samosas to take with us as road trip snacks. These plus our metal water bottles and coffee cups pretty much held us over the whole trip. I did have a breakdown at one gas station when I needed something sweet STAT. I opted for some pastries in a plastic #2 clam-shell, because at least that is down-cyclable (as opposed to filmy plastic wrap or a candy bar wrapper). But really, it was pretty lame of me, and I actually have no excuse except that I AM WEAK. We are doing another trip at the end of this month, and I will make samosas AND cupcakes for that one.
For the most part, the only sacrifices I had to make on the trip were no honey on my fry bread, no jam on the biscuits, and no plain mustard on my sammy. I was also surprised when nobody in rural WY, SD or ND even seemed to bat an eye when we used our own coffee mugs or water bottles at the gas station! I was prepared for a ton of awkward conversations and judgement. Apparently people in the country-side are just chill, and the real problem is with us city folk, pre-judging everyone all the time. Neat.
During the road trip I was gifted a bottle of root beer by my sister in law. It was a glass bottle with a metal cap, so we all thought I was safe. Until I opened the bottle and found a little plastic disk under the metal cap. WHAT?
I used up one of my plastic travel shampoo bottles I collected from a business trip a few months ago. I have a personal policy to ONLY pack these little bottles when I travel by plane. I always carry on my backpack as my only piece of luggage, so everything has to be able to pass TSA. I wasn’t going on a flight, so I didn’t need to waste these little bottles on this trip! In my packing haste I guess I just forgot.
This brings to light that I need to resolve 2 issues in my life regarding plastic:
1. I need to find a plastic-free shampoo / conditioner alternative for everyday life
2. I need to find a plastic-free shampoo / conditioner alternative for air travel.
This whole shampoo thing makes me happy because I feel like this is a big point of Plastic Free July: it forces you to think through issues you never have thought through before.
I can buy shampoo and conditioner in bulk and refill my existing plastic bottles in the shower, and I can buy some little glass bottles with metal lids for travel. Or, I can go for bar shampoo. I think the bar shampoo sounds the most low-maintenance, but it depends on how my hair reacts to it. I will try it out and let you know how it goes. It looks like JR Liggetts old fashioned bar shampoo gets good reviews. I could score a metal travel soap container and that would work great for air trips!
Even with this, I will be tossing out some shampoo and conditioner related plastic as I transition over to the new system. No point in wasting my current supply…
Finally, last night I added 3 new pieces of plastic to my inventory: the liner bag from my Corn Flakes, the plastic bag from our rice, and a plastic window from my diva cup box.
The Corn Flakes liner and the rice bag can be avoided in the future by purchasing oatmeal and rice in bulk. This just requires planning ahead and bringing our glass jars to the store. I think we should invest in more of the ½ gallon jars for this reason, that way we can purchase a significant amount at one time.
I don’t feel too bad about the diva cup window, because that little device is going to help me cut down on a huge amount of waste during my period. And from all the raving from ladies around the world, it is going to change my life. I have been slowly getting used to the concept since I first heard about it a few years ago, and PFJ gave me the push I needed to just buy it! I am still kind of nervous about getting the hang of it (especially when I think about ballet class!), so I imagine the transition will be a bit tricky.