My experimental anti-consumerism (update)…

So, as mentioned in a previous post, I have committed myself to the Compact for at least the month of January. I thought I would write an update to tell you all how its going.

Usual daily/weely purchases are just food, bottled water and money for the Metro to and from work. Most of our food purchases are just fresh fruits and veggies, pasta, nuts, etc. This week we had some fresh fish from the Sunday market, which was a great treat. We also tend to eat biscuits or chocolate most nights, which involves packaging. We have also started drinking Sahlep more often, which comes in a sort of paper/plasticy carton. Yesterday we bought a bucket (3000 grams!) of plain yogurt. I am concerned about the fact that there is no recycling, and throwing away a bucket every week makes for a lot of plastic waste. Not sure what we could use those for, but if anyone has an idea, I’d love to hear it.

I also spend 10/15 lira a week on yoga and meditation (just a voluntary donation for using the studio space for meditation). Then I usually have lunch and coffee out with my buddy Delpha after these two things, so that’s about 10 lira each time. This week we met friends one night and had some drinks. I’m still off the alcohol for the time being, so I think my two glasses of coke were probably about 4-6 TL. And today I have to buy more conditioner and face wash. I am going to buy my face wash from The Body Shop, because from what I’ve read, they don’t do animal testing, they support community and fair trade and they have a charitable foundation that does a variety of good things. I also want to buy a new toothbrush this week. Mine is pretty worn out.

Apart from all the above purchases which are in the non-thing or necessary items categories, I haven’t bought anything. I do still want to buy a couple of scarves to make my wardrobe seem a bit less, hm, one dimensional. I feel like I wear the exact same thing every day. Boring. But anyway, I am resisting the urge.

I am admitting in advance to one technical violation of the Compact guidelines: I am going to purchase two reusable aluminium water bottles for myself and Richie. This will prevent us from always buying a little plastic bottle of water when we’re out and about, thus creating less plastic waste. I think it still sticks with the spirit of the Compact and will be better for the environment and will mean fewer purchases in the long run.

Thinking of the Compact, and also considering the fact that I am voluntarily down this week from three jobs to one, I have decided to start a new little ‘project.’ Richie and I are trying to do at least one Turkish thing per week, and I am going to document all the cheap but fun and cultural things you can do in Istanbul for under 10 lira per person. Istanbul on a shoe string, if you will. I am going to make a big list of the things we do and how much they cost and post them here.

Okay, that’s it for now. I should get this day started! Oh, and thanks to everyone who sent me encouraging messages over the last day or so about jobs and life, etc. I really appreciated hearing from you! Lots of love to you all!

Oh, and I just read this little quote on another blog The Non-Consumer Advocate:

‘Use it up, wear it out, make it do or do without.’

I love it!

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