In my effort to be less wasteful and reduce the amount that I consume, I find that I need to consume. Ironic, isn’t it? In order to use less plastic and single use items I find that I need to acquire some solid, sturdy, reusable items. Take my Tupperware for example. Most of the stuff I currently have is made of plastic. While I don’t think plastic is inherently evil, I do think that there are more environmentally friendly options to carry my lunch in. Glass is always an option but because I use my bike for transportation and that shit is heavy, I wanted to find a lighter option.
I found these really cute stainless steel Eco Lunch Boxes online and decided to try it out. I was a little concerned with how small they were but it said it could fit 4 cups of food and that is really more than enough for my lunch so I bought one. My first impression was that it was way heavier than I expected it to be. It’s definitely heavier than plastic but also way lighter than glass and not breakable.
I was also concerned with the fact that it wasn’t 100% leak proof. Some of the things I make are a little saucy and I don’t want to have to worry about sauce leaking all over the place and making my bike paniers smell like garlic ginger sauce forever.
I took my Eco Lunch Box to work with Black Bean Salad and Cabbage Slaw the first day and it was a huge success. It held a very generous amount of food and it’s nice and compact with no extra wasted space. The box did not leak at all even though both of my dishes were pretty saucy and my ride is pretty bumpy. It stayed nice and cool on my ride to work and everything was as tasty as it was when I packed it. It’s also very easy to wash and can go in the washing machine which is a huge plus.
Along with my lunch box I packed a fork from home, a pair of titanium chopstick that I bought to go along with the lunch box and a cloth napkin so I could reduce any potential waste from my little homemade lunch. So I am feeling pretty good about my new sustainable lunch system but if only everything in life was as easy as lunch…
The thing that I still find super challenging to change is how much I rely on single use items when I am traveling or out and about. If I decide I have to have something sweet in the middle of my workday and I want to pop down to the dangerously convenient French bakery to grab something, I get to bring my reusable container with me so that they can put that piece of red velvet cake in my stainless steel container rather than a single use plastic box. I also get to be better about bringing my coffee mug with me everywhere so that I’m not tempted to get the disposable paper cup when I’m out and about and jonesing for a cup of coffee. The one thing that I am super excited about using when I’m out and about are my titanium chopsticks. I just think it’s going to be so cool to pull my case out and use my own badass chopsticks next time I go eat sushi.
The thing that I am grateful for is my newfound awareness of how much single use stuff I consume and throw away. It is definitely leading me to make different choice and problem solve how I can consume and waste less. Because the first step in solving a problem is to identify it.