yay and boo

I was setting off for my Halloween boycott camping trip and fretted about meal planning.  Usually I have to be a little more prepared seeing as though small camping towns generally don’t do plastic free so well.   I ran out of time this time, however, as we were trying to get across the border and catch a ferry to the Olympic Peninsula.  I was anxious…no cheese in tow!  What is a camping trip without cheese?!

We got to Port Townsend and stopped, with a judging and pessimistic attitude, at “The Food Coop”.  Little did I know, I was about to fall in love.  We were met at the door with a shelf of stainless steel containers, which for a plastic-free nerd like me, is indeed exciting.  The next stop was the bulk section.   Goodies galore!  They even had a bulk liquids section for things like syrup and oils.  Roughly 30 minutes later (no joke) we continued to the deli counter.  Mmmmm mozzarella balls.  The deli woman offered me some natural wax paper bags to plunk the cheese into, with a smile.  And then told me where in the store I could buy these wax bags.  Brilliant for other things like…olives!   In this aisle I also noticed the bulk cleaning liquids.  At the dairy section I noticed a man refilling his used egg carton for bulk eggs.  At the can section, I was impressed with the abundance of Eden Organic (the only canned beans without BPA & plastic).  At the veggie section, I couldn’t choose among the abundant local, and labeled, yum.  They even had bulk arugula, which is a tough one to find without a petroleum-based casing in most stores.  I wanted to buy the whole store.  At the checkout, I was reading the signs for various make-your-own classes.  Food Coop, please come to Vancouver because our stores suck.  There are many people here who would come to you.   Or, if anyone out there has the energy to start an even less-packaged Food Coop here, please step forward now.   Here are some pictures from the store of my heart.

Ruby (my VW van) carried us from Port Townsend to La Push, an appropriate locale for Halloween seeing as this is where the popular Twilight movies were filmed.  Craving the sea, we went for a walk.  Do you see where this is going?  I’ve alluded to the fact that I can no longer really enjoy beaches quite the same way anymore.  Well, this was the result of a 10-minute walk…and I only collected one genre.

Don't let my incredible outfit distract you

Megan collected the “other” category until her hands too, were full.  We surveyed our catch, and Megan quite appropriately noted how sad it was that we could identify the corporations responsible for this trash, simply by the look of the packaging.  E.g. the colours of Gatorade.   Ugh.  Among other offenders were: Coke, Lay’s, Pepsi, and a styrofoam noodle company I can’t quite remember the name of but definitely recognize from a fragment.

10 minutes of use, 10 minute walk on the beach, 10 lifetimes in the ocean

A peek in the closest trash bin didn’t help my ill feelings.

Heart sinking...

Another beach we hiked to was even worse, given its remoteness.  Bottle after bottle.  I kept thinking, “Wow, I am plastic-free and perfectly hydrated.”  Bottles weren’t the only habitants on this beach.   In this picture, Keesha is inspecting the trash.

The trash inspector

And here was the Halloween plastic picture.  Plastic is creepy.  Boo.

Happy belated Halloween

One last picture, taken at the end of the trip on the way home.

Seeing the world through a plastic-coloured lens.

I put these fake-plastic glasses on, but had to quickly remove them because the world looked like it was coated in a plastic sheen.   The funny thing is that taking the glasses off seemingly had no effect..

7 thoughts on “yay and boo

  1. We hide in the house on Halloween with the lights out. Ooh, no spooky kids on our doorstep. 🙂

    Love the store you found. If you ever come to the Bay Area, I have to take you to Rainbow Grocery in SF. A little too far for me to travel for everyday shopping and one of the reasons I crave to move back to the city.

    Do you have info on the wax paper bags? What brand?

      1. These wax bags (most waxed paper products) are made from paraffin wax which is still a petroleum product. I wish I could source an animal or plant based wax bag. The company “If You Care” (no affiliation) lists a new no petroleum or wax all paper sandwich bag but I haven’t found them for sale anywhere.

  2. Love that store! We met a few of those across Canada, and I always got irrationally excited when we stepped in the door.

    And I love camping, but I can’t believe you boycott Halloween?! The most fabulous dress up fun day of the whole year!

  3. Great food co-op. Really wish we had that here in Vancouver.

    Our family’s moving to plastic-free too, so sad to see what washes up on the beaches. Great pictures. Hope you had a great camping trip otherwise.

    Puck Flastic!

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