Buckets and Bike Rides

Sometimes it’s the little things that we appreciate the most.  For me that’s definitely the case, for example the newest addition to the Ruka has encouraged me to think creatively about what I can repurpose to be more sustainable in my life.  We’ve started catching our extra water (the water it takes for our water heater that we keep the heat turned down low on to get warm enough for us to brave the shower) in buckets that Ms. DeVries got for us at Home Depot.  Then we can use the water to flush the toilet or shave our legs or mop the floors.

This may not seem like a big idea, and I guess it’s not.  But the cool thing is that we implement little things like the buckets that I might have never thought of before.  A lot of the little moves toward sustainability that we practice at the Ruka are things I hope to incorporate into my life after this year, wherever that is.

The buckets have taught me something else.  Orange and ugly, they represent everything that I never thought would be an appealing contribution to a bathroom. In the same way that the compost bucket in the kitchen doesn’t fit the sleek decor (or the general smell you want in a kitchen).  However, both the compost and the shower buckets facilitate the opportunity to reduce waste and work together to chip away at our wasteful habits.  Ugly buckets that otherwise seem out of place, aid in our attempts to realize our goal as a community.

Yesterday, I took a bike ride through Overton Park and stopped for a minute by the shell to stare at the clouds and I started thinking about the future for the Rhodes Intentional community.  I’m not sure if I come back in ten years if the Ruka will still be happening at Rhodes (although I think we all hope so), but regardless I do hope that if it continues there will be other little ideas like the buckets that will add to my understanding of household sustainability. Next year we can pass on orange bathroom buckets and a red compost bucket to 6 new students and with them the goal of environmentalism that links the new community with ours.

-jami

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