The 'Green Thing'

Forums Crete Environment Make Crete Greener The 'Green Thing'

Make Crete Greener

This topic contains 5 replies, has 3 voices, and was last updated by  umaremasu in Crete 15th November 2011 at 11:37 am.

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  • #35408

    Jovana
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        This was sent to me by email and I thought it worth sharing. :)

        In the queue at the supermarket, the cashier told an older woman that she should bring her own grocery bags because plastic bags weren’t good for the environment.
        The woman apologized to him and explained, "We didn’t have the green thing back in my day." The clerk responded, "That’s our problem today.  Your generation did not care enough to save our environment."He was right — our generation didn’t have the green thing in its day. Back then, we returned milk bottles, coke, seven up bottles and beer bottles to the shop or off licence. They sent them back to the plant to be washed, sterilized and refilled and re-used. So it could use the same bottles over and over.  So they really were recycled.

        But we didn’t have the green thing back in our day.

        We walked up stairs, because we didn’t have lifts and escalators in every shop and office building. We walked to the local shops and didn’t climb into a 300-horsepower machine every time we had to go to a supermarket.We bought fruit and veg loose – and washed them at home. We didn’t have to throw away bins full of plastic, foam and paper packaging that need huge recycling plants fed by monster trucks all day, everyday.

        But she was right. We didn’t have the green thing in our day.

        Back then, we washed the baby’s nappies because we didn’t have the throw-away kind.  We dried clothes on a line, not in an energy gobbling machine burning up KW’s — wind and solar power really did dry the clothes.
        Kids got hand-me-down (mostly hand made or hand knitted) clothes from their brothers or sisters, not always brand-new clothing shipped from the other side of the planet.
        But that old lady is right; we didn’t have the green thing back in our day.Back then shops repaired things with funny things called spare parts – we didn’t need to throw whole items away because a small part failed.
        Back then, we had one TV, or radio, in the house — not a TV in every room. And the TV had a small screen the size of a handkerchief (remember  them?), not a screen the size of Wales .In the kitchen, we blended and stirred by hand because we didn’t have electric machines to do everything for us.When we packaged a fragile item to send in the mail, we used scrunched up old newspapers to cushion it, not polystyrene or plastic bubble wrap.

        Back then, we didn’t fire up an engine and burn petrol just to cut the lawn. We used a push mower that ran on human power and hand clippers for the hedges.
        We exercised by working so we didn’t need to go to a brightly lit, air conditioned health club to run on treadmills that operate on electricity and then drink millions of bottles of that special water from those plastic bottles.

        But she’s right; we didn’t have the green thing back then.

        We drank from a fountain when we were thirsty instead of using a plastic cup or a plastic bottle every time we had a drink of water.
        We refilled writing pens with ink instead of buying a new plastic pen, and we replaced blades in a razor instead of throwing away the whole plastic razor just because the blade got dull.

        But we didn’t have the green thing back then.

        Back then, people took the bus and kids rode their bikes to school or walked instead of turning their parents into a 24-hour taxi service.
        We had one electrical outlet in a room, not an entire bank of sockets to power a dozen appliances.  And we didn’t need a computerized gadget to receive a signal beamed from satellites 2,000 miles out in space in order to find the nearest fish & chip shop.

        But isn’t it sad the current generation laments how wasteful we old folks were just because we didn’t have the green thing back then?
        Please forward this on to another selfish old person who needs a lesson in conservation from a young smartass.
         
              
           

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        #35736

        umaremasu in Crete
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            LOL, as one who spent her youth without the "green thing" I will definitely be posting it elsewhere. But it also got me thinking of other things…
            err anyone remember cutting up newspaper for the smallest room, which was often outside anyway?
            When I was VERY young, veggies etc were delivered from a horsedrawn cart, and if "Dobbin" felt the urge to "go", the roses got a bonus! Not to mention the delights we had being allowed to feed him with half a carrot!
            Although fairly "non green", coal fires were very useful for getting rid of household waste, paper (tons of newspaper used then, which the chip shop used to beg for as it wasn’t considered a H&S risk), cardboard and waste fat. The dustbin was used basically for ashes, hence the warnings on the early plastic waste bins.

            Anyone else with similar recollections he/she would like to share?

            Regards

            Anna

            #35970

            Jovana
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                I don’t remember veggies coming on a horse and cart but I remember the ‘rag and bone man’ -(I wonder where that title came from) – with a horse and cart and Mr. Fowler the neighbour running outside with his bucket and shovel after the horse had ‘gone’ to collect the free manure.

                I don’t remember newspaper in the smallest room either, but I remember that horrible hard paper with IZAL written on it that stank of….What?  I can still smell it but can’t identify it!  My dad swore by it and I didn’t know there was lovely soft stuff till I visited a posh friend’s house! :D

                #36138

                Titch
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                    Happy days as I recall!
                    My father was an officer in the RAF and everytime we moved out the lino floors had to be spotlessly shiny….us kids were given carte blanche to put on lots of socks and skid up & down for hours on end a thing unheard of up until the month before we moved out….mmmm an early form of slave labour methinks lol
                    Travelling on steam trains is my earliest memory and it was a great adventure, sitting in a carriage with my Gramma who had rolled down her stockings and was giving everyone fierce glares daring them to say something, which of course nobody did. Kings Cross station in 1963 with an enormous "real" tree packed underneath with "real" presents for Gt Ormond St Hosp. They would last about 30 seconds these days!
                    Our first enormous black and white tv with a tiny screen, we only watched it for about an hour a day as we were too busy playing outside. No heating anywhere else in the house other than the posh lounge, which of course was for guests! and the kitchen. We dressed up to go to bed in the winter and could hardly move underneath the mound of blankets and gradually undressed as we warmed up :)
                    I wouldn’t change a bit of it….we were watched over by the whole neighborhood, everyone spoke to everyone,nobody locked a door in case somebody needed to pop in and borrow something lol I had very few toys as my playground was the outdoors and I never felt I needed more. Maybe I’m seeing things through rose tinted glasses but the kids have so much these days and never seem happy,we had so little and were happy a lot of the time?

                    #36275

                    Jovana
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                        It’s funny, but I remember the weather being better too!  Long summer evenings playing out with the neighbours, going to Sunday School, day trips to Bognor and sunburn, when the only cream available was Nivea.  My dad used to keep us off school if it was a nice summer day and take us to the seaside. I remember armchairs in the back of his lorry and the ‘Are we nearly there yet’ from all of us in the back who couldn’t see where we were going.

                        Tea on the primus stove, individual fruit pies, a new rubber ring and the tide out so far you couldn’t see the sea without binoculars! (excuse the exaggeration, but I’m enjoying it all over again and getting enthusiastic here).

                        Ah!  Those were the days my friend,we thought they’d never end de dum de dum de dum de dum. :)

                        #36385

                        umaremasu in Crete
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                            Tsk… Rag and bone man comes from….well Wikipedia explains simpler and better than I can!
                            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rag_and_bone_man

                            I can remember being able to buy bags of broken biscuits (somewhat stale) for about 1d on the way to school, and frozen Jubblies (which seem to have made a come-back) which would sit in your desk available for a crafty slurp for most of the day!
                            Yeah…summers seemed warmer and longer, BUT the snow lasted flipping months (E Midlands here, not Scotland) and of course back then, no days off school for snow, and playtimes were spent going down the lethal slides you could make in the playground! (H&S again??)

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