Monday, September 18, 2017

Environmentally Unfriendly

My name is M. and I am a carbon footprint monster and a hypocrite. There, I've said it. Why? Well, I am very inconsistent in my interpretation of environmental friendliness, or whatever you want to call it. Ever since my teenage years when separating waste became a thing, I have been doing so meticulously. Not only at home, but also at work, in hotel rooms, you name it. I also try to avoid buying fruit out of season or from faraway places, even if I have a real craving for it. I distinctly remember the taste of what must have been the juiciest tartest apple EVER only to discover that it was imported from New Zealand (!) and not allowing myself to ever repurchase it again. Well, unless I am in a supermarket in NZ. This applies to most foods I buy and I also try not to let any of it go to waste once I have bought it. Since I can't give up my (expensive) Starbucks habit, I at least avoid drinking it out of disposable cups whenever I can, bringing my own eco-friendly bamboo tumbler instead. The list could go on and on.
Then again, I eradicate all my environmental holiness by flying more than the average person. This past weekend I flew to Munich (less than 450 km from Vienna) instead of taking the train. I did look into trains, but they were not cheap either, which was not surprising as it was the first Oktoberfest weekend and flights and hotel rooms were not exactly a bargain either. The thing is, I love everything about flying and don't mind killing time at airports in the least, as long as it's not 5 a.m. in the morning and the airport offers more diversion than those of Almaty and Minsk that are close contenders for "most boring airport in the Northern Hemisphere". Also, I have licked blood ever since I qualified for Frequent Traveller in the Star Alliance programme for the first time and am very eager not to lose my status, which is much harder now that I don't travel for business any more. Why so eager, you wonder? Well, I really appreciate the privileges that come with it - lounge access, business check in and fast lane security checks, as well as an extra piece of checked-in luggage, which is a shopaholic's dream - and don't stop to think about the impact this has on the environment at all. So. I am a horrible carbon-footprint-leaver (who is already looking forward to the next weekend break by plane in less than a month).

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