Tuesday, 6 October 2009
My awakening conscience?
The Awakening Conscience by William Holman Hunt
I've been giving a lot of thought to Floss's challenge to herself (at Troc, broc and recup - see side bar) following Dottie Angel in drastically reducing the amount spent on new goods. I've wondered whether I could actually give up buying some of the bits and pieces we buy to give ourselves a lift - the odd magazine, a tin of paint or a tray of pansies for the garden. I mentioned it to my gorgeous girl who thought her mother finally needed collecting by men in white coats! I have actually been gradually reducing my expenditure on new goods for some time and I'm far more likely to be found at a car boot or a charity shop than going into the city centre to the department stores. Earlier in the year I did a post about my determination to not pay VAT where I can possibly avoid it which by and large means buying second hand where possible.
So I had been wondering what else I could do to reduce my carbon footprint and I have discovered Freecycle. Now I may be way behind the times here but I hadn't heard of it before and decided to give it a go. I've had my piano since I was 6 and I no longer have room for it nor the inclination to play (other than when I'm annoyed when I will bash out Beethoven until I've calmed down!) The gorgeous girl took a dislike to playing when she realised that practice meant more than turning up for the lesson itself. So the piano had become a glorified photo stand and it was time for her to go.
Freecycle is a site where you list what you no longer need and people can ask for said item. No money exchanges hands and the person wanting the item collects it. So I listed my beautiful piano and within minutes a graduate student e-mailed me to say she'd love it. I agreed she could have it but was amazed at how much interest there was in her -old peoples homes, families etc. Yesterday a pair of removal men came to escort her off my premises and take her to her new home. I have tonight received an e-mail from the lady who had her to say that she and her friends had a wonderful evening last night playing her and singing Christmas Carols! It was lovely to find this simple transaction had given such pleasure.
I also responded to somebody requesting on Freecycle a piece of IKEA furniture that I happened to have languishing in my garage for her little boy to store his toys in. She collected it this evening (with a boot half full of other items that had been gifted to her). She was thrilled that within minutes of her asking for this item I had responded.
Apparently sometimes things can go wrong but I have to say if you haven't tried it give it a go! I've just put my first request on for something I would like. I'll let you know if its successful! I'm still wondering about Floss and Dottie's challenge but this for me is another step in the right direction of reducing waste and landfill and letting others benefit from what we don't need.
Have any of you tried Freecycle and did it work for you?