I completed my last order of the day on my bicycle over in Elephant and castle and I found two pairs of Ski sets thrown out outside the block I’d just been in.. They are in good and working condition so I couldn’t help but wonder why they had been thrown out and what they story was behind it. Had they never heard of Freecycle? Or did they think someone would just come along and take them? 🙂 I wished for a moment that they culprits would see me taking them so I could know more about their story.
I’d been speaking about skiing with a friend a few days prior so it seemed to fit and trigger the conversation spotting them there. Perhaps we will take up skiing together.
Not only did I grab a ‘Freebie’ – but how I managed to get them to my mothers Garage in Bethnal Green was also a Freegan journey, though only half way, because my honesty caught up with me.
After both my mother (on the phone) and I falied to download or understand the Uber app, I stood next to my bicycle and the skis and wondered how I was going to transport them.
Just as I finished my thought, a man in a people carrier parked up infront of me, went to his boot and pulled out a huge container, the size of four beer barrels and planned on taking them into the block, so naturally I offered to help get it in the lift.
Coming out the block, I then realised that this guy had a big car and I needed a lift, so I asked if I could give him some money to take me to Bethnal Green if he wasn’t busy. He was heading back to work, but he offered to drop me off to Borough, which actually was a little off track for him but really handy for me. We had a little natter in the car about Somalia and the UK and how the world is always changing.
I got some rubbers bands from a guy in the printing shop next to the station (to wrap up the ski sticks that seemed to be flying everywhere) and headed to the underground. The guy didn’t want anything for the lift so I gave him my thanks and carried on with my day.
I joked with the staff at Borough station and as well on the other end of my journey. Yes yes its very funny in the summer time to be walking around London with Skis. I even entertained myself by having a very terrible and embarrassing flirt on the tube with a personal trainer who got slapped in the face by a overstretched Elastic flying off the handles of the Ski poles. Though I think he was more amused than I was.
It was only when I tapped out on the Oyster card that I realised that I could have had my whole journey free. The guy at Bourogh had opened the barriers for me to get through, not reminding me about the oyster (I did that myself) and the guy at Bethnal Green also just let me through the barrier, saying nothing about tapping out. I joked with him about how I could have had a free journey. He was with me on that one. It wasn’t really Freegan, but it could have been had I been quick enough. All that being honest has got the better of me.
Once I’d stored away the skis (like some squirrel), I was inspired to make some juice for my mum since I was there now. I deserved a juice.
The guys in the shop tried to give me bananas for free.. because I was ‘beautiful’.. but since I didn’t want bananas I didn’t take them up on the offer.. Plus for some reason I seemed put off by the use of the word ‘beautiful’ and thought perhaps this freebie would come with something other expectation. I just wanted to buy my mum some apples.
Though to be fair, my regular fruit and veg guy in my are always gives me freebies. He’s just nice like that and I think I brighten up his day by taking time to chat with him whenever I go there.
Still, I saw today as an almost perfect example of Freeganism working itself back into my life – though I never called it that before. With the New moon and Ramadan coming up and it being a time to let go and begin a fresh start to the month, all this lovely energy plays a calming role.
I also had a guy chase me down the street by foot (while I cycled) to give me the little turtle that fell of my key chain. A small reminder to slow down –
Mostly though, today highlighted the love and kindness that can radiate through London, even on the days when the Sun shine hides behind the clouds.
And it is today that I wish to officially call myself a Freegan and to more light-heartedly and with conviction promote the Freegan lifestyle.
To stop over consuming, to take what we need, to share with others what resources we have and what we find.