Saturday, April 27, 2013

Thoughts on thrones...

I've been road tripping for about a week now and as such have seen a lot of public toilets. I've seen everything from the grubbiest rest stop outhouse to the marble-walled stalls in the parliament building.

My favourite were the composting toilets we saw at a few of the more secluded rest stops on Vancouver Island. They flush like a real toilet. Well, sort of like a real toilet. More like the ones you see on buses and airplanes where they have a little door that opens when you flush. But they are definitely not stinky and gross like outhouses. I don't entirely understand how these work, but the idea is fantastic. More research will be done into this style.

My next favourite can be found at most Tim Horton's restaurants. These are the ones with the two buttons. One for number one and a slightly bigger button, suitably for number two. This is becoming a popular option for water conservation. And I think it's brilliant. You need to be able to have enough water to get the coilers down, but that is not necessary for every trip to the little girls' (or boys') room. I can see how this would be the more popular option, but maybe they should combine these two to make a super eco toilet!

Then there's the auto flushing toilets! I hate these with a passion! Not only does it require more energy to run the damn thing, but often, if you need a little extra time on the john, it will flush while you're still on it! Or before you're completely done wiping, so you have to make it flush again. This is such a waste of water. And there's often a bit of back splash if it goes off while you're still sitting down. Ew!

If I ever get the chance to build my own home, I think I'll go for the composting toilet. As long as I can convince my husband. :P

Friday, April 19, 2013

Earth Day 2013

Earth day. Long story short: I'm missing it.

Long story long:
I'm going on vacation tomorrow. Earth day is Monday. Although I'm an advocate that every day should be earth day, I also believe that having a specific day every year is a good reminder. It causes some people to think about the planet for a day and other people to push their limits on what they can do. This year, I will be away from home.

Pitch-in happens every year during earth week. This is when garbage bags are distributed to different groups and everyone is asked to take a different section of town to pick up all the trash that accumulated over winter.

To be honest, this isn't my favourite Earth Day activity. I feel that we are picking up trash we can see and moving it somewhere that we don't see it. It's not really making things any better. The trash is still there, just outta sight outta mind. Maybe if we didn't pick it up and had to look at it all the time, we would make a greater effort not to make so much in the first place.

Regardless, it is very much a societal symbol of environmentalism. No one from HOPE Society will be taking part as most of us are away. (Actually one member will be but she will be representing the library, not HOPE.)

No, I have no specific plans for Earth Day. I will most likely be spending a good deal of the day driving. Driving my 1988 Toyota Corolla. Which is sort of ironic. At least it's fairly fuel efficient.

HOPE has however prepared something for the day. The week actually! I personally went all over town taking pictures of products from local businesses that are earth-friendly, of environmentally friendly practices at organizations, of the town's solar panels and electric car charging station. We took those pictures and made a display that will be available for viewing all next week.

All week while I'm away... I will try to do something extra special for Earth Day on Monday. I just don't know what, yet.