04.01.2019 | Naps. Sustainability.

Naps | The human body is a mysterious thing, isn’t it? Or maybe not so mysterious, but actually quite simple and it’s just our complicated minds that don’t want to accept the body’s way of calling a time-out. Because whe think we have to do things or get things done. When I got back home from work today and after I had some food, I lay down and napped for about two hours. Which might mess with my sleep tonight, but somehow I doubt it will.

TV | I still can’t bring myself to leave the West Wing and watch some new current shows on Netflix or Prime. I feel like my mind is too frazzled to be able to give a new show I haven’t seen before the attention it deserves. The attention I need to fully enjoy it.

Sustainable Living | I spent some time today considering the discrepancy between what I preach and what I practice about sustainabilty. I care about the environment for a variety of reasons. That’s why I’m an active member of the Green Party. That’s why I spent all of my professional life so far working in jobs that aim at shaping or implementing policies and strategies to protect the environment. But I admit in my personal life I don’t always follow through with all the things I know I should be doing. Whether it’s to be more conscious about plastic waste. Or what’s been on my mind more recently: Carbon footprint, especially through travel.

For many years I’ve been offsetting the climate impact of any flight I’ve taken through the NGO atmosfair. Today for the first time I’ve also made donation to offset the CO2 emissons of using my car. I know some call “carbon offsetting” a copout like the church selling indulgences for sinners in the Middle Ages. In a way I agree and in another way I don’t. In a way it soothes my Green conscience and in another I feel like a hypocrite. I mentioned the discrepancies, right? Before I dropped out of my Environmental Science Master’s program I considered writing my thesis about what’s called the intention-behaviour-gap. It’s a bit sobering when you find yourself the best human example of it though. Especially when you think of people like Greta, who is doing much better with this than I do, and she’s only 15!

But how much money and/or time of my life am I willing to give up by really practicing what I preach? I work in a city about 45 km away. Commuting via public transport would take about 1h 50 minutes (+ 10 minutes walk to the station) and require switching trains / trams twice, always risking missing a connection when the first one is delayed. Even with normal (busy) motorway driving takes me there in less than one hour. Which means I save about two hours every day by using my car instead of public transport. I can justify that to myself.

Airtravel for a vacation is more complicated issue, especially if you like travelling to other countries. In my case mostly across the English Channel in the past few years. Going to London on the Eurostar is no big deal to me, as it doesn’t cost that much more than a flight as I refuse to fly with lowcost carriers like RyanAir on principle. It also takes about the same time considering travelling time to the airport here and from Heathrow into the city. But in three weeks I’m flying to Manchester for a few Frank gigs (as I have done last year as well) and I have to confess I didn’t really consider doing that by train. Because that would have meant one whole day of travelling instead of taking an early morning or an evening flight. I would have needed to take another day off work to do that and I wasn’t willing to. It also definitely would have cost more than the flight.

I’m determined to go on vacation in Scotland in May come Brexit or high water. That’s even farther up north than Manchester and takes even longer by train. It would costs probably about 150 € more than flying. Am I willing to do pay that and to use up that additional vacation day for sitting on the train for 12 hours? I’m not quite sure yet, but right now I’m leaning towards that option actually. I did that on my first trip to Scotland 10 years ago in fact, but I back then I had always planned to combine that with a stop in London to begin with.

Doing the things you believe are right, isn’t always the easiest to do, is it?

Reading | I gave up on reading more than one book at a time. I tried, but I obviously suck at it. I tore through “From Duke Till Dawn”, because this particular Regency Romance turned out to not really be my thing, so I’ll not even bother with the other two books in this series. At the moment I very much enjoy Mhairi McFarlane’s latest “Don’t You Forget About Me”, even though I have to say ‘Dead Dads’ are sometimes a bit too close to home. This year it’s going to be 30 years since my dad died :-(

Same, Same | I’m still hooked on Words With Friends 2 (hit me up, if you want, player’s name is: dennasus). I’m still eating too much chocolate.

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