Real Recycling

We all know about recycling. Don’t worry about how much plastic or other rubbish we buy; as long as we separate it when we throw it away, then we can feel good and be sure that we are “saving the planet”.

But maybe it is better to buy stuff that you can recycle yourself.

Long ago I received a “Jons Adventures” T-Shirt to wear as part of the official team at the bike fair. It was a good quality T-shirt in a nice bright yellow with a discrete logo and was long one of my favorite post-biking outfits. Three years ago it became my smart “shore going” T-shirt and was worn all the time on land.

Eventually, after a few years, there were a few small food stains around the stomach area and a small hole on the neck so it became my “on board” T-shirt; still OK to have on when unexpected visitors dropped in but to be changed before going anywhere.

As the holes grew and the stains increased it became a working shirt, ideal for crawling in to anchor lockers or greasing winches. This is not an easy life for a shirt and the descent to general rag was rapid.

As a rag the cloth continued to be used daily for everything from holding a nearly dead fish to being wrapped around a rope to prevent rubbing. The holes slowly grew, the areas of whole material reduced and the color bleached out until the day we needed a “bike rag” to clean the mountain bikes.

And today, after over seven years, the “T-shirt” is still going strong in its sixth “re-cycle”.

A friend on a neighboring boat makes bags out of used sail canvas. As soon as we saw these, we knew that this was a type of recycling that we needed so ordered a bag with our logo on it. Now we can use “old sails” to go shopping and enjoy the smiles of the stall holders when we say “pas de plastique merci“.

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