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Friday, January 29, 2010

When in Rome?

Twelve days ago I started this quest
To live with less, I will try my best
So far it has been an interesting ride
My rules have been tricky in which to abide

For instance, recently, I was not at home
And you know what they say, 'When you are in Rome'
Rome I was not, but Calgary instead
Staying in a hotel, not my own bed

While on this trip, my rules they began to unravel
For, how would I eat, drink and travel?
I did my best to follow my rules
Although every Starbucks I passed made me drool

I went there for work, not for fun or for kicks
Some rules I did follow, while others were nixed
I ate out a few times, and although it was free
I still felt like a cheat, how weak could I be?

Now that I'm home, I have gained some insight
On reflection, I managed to do some things right
For one, I did carpool, with my dad, which was great
I also brought my mug and some snacks which we ate

We also went out to a friends for one dinner
Of all of the meals we had, it was the winner
So, although I'm not perfect, I can honestly say
That I have yet to enjoy my favorite latte

As you can probably gather from the above poem, I was in Calgary for the past few days on a business trip - at a poetry workshop in fact!  Although it was a great event for me to attend, it did put me into a difficult situation as far as my challenge goes.  We did eat out at a few 'chain' restaurants, and I did enjoy a regular coffee or two, however, for the most part, I would say that I did abide by the fundamental principle of 'living with less', which is spending as little money as possible (the trip did not cost me a cent of my own money).  I would also say that I did not even take full advantage of this situation and kept my meals/snacks to very modest proportions. 

So, in hindsight, I have decided that I did the best that I could in this situation and I can hold my head high and continue on my path for the next year.  One more thing that I have to add is that I have sure enjoyed the feedback, comments, and messages that I have received from all of my readers, so keep them coming! 

All the best, Marebear :)

"If at first you don't succeed... destroy all evidence that you tried." - Author Unknown
(So, if this blog ever disappears, you know what happened!  Just joking, but I thought it was a cute version of the quote that I was going to put in!)


  1. Ha ha!! The quote on this post is my favorite so far!
    I must say, good for you Maren, for pursuing this interesting goal! Life is way too short, and I feel it is imperative to do what you must in order to be happy and enjoy every single day on this planet.
    Do you ever feel sometimes though... and I mean no disrespect whatsoever by tabling this, it's just something that I have struggled with for years... that society and the world in general is on a progressively downward spiral... and that a single person's positive, well-intended efforts, while totally admirable, are mostly futile? That's the biggest challenge I face, when it comes to me personally dialoguing with myself about 'living with less'. I am a responsible, hard-working adult with no serious accountability to anyone but myself (ie no kids, no husband, no pets, not even a houseplant!). If I want to buy something or travel somewhere, I just do. I have a hard time justifying denying myself the things I like, especially since I am a healthy, educated, tax-paying, contributing member of society. Now, you know how Todd and I live - and it's definitely not to excess. But we certainly do not go without... meaning that we each have the usual material possessions (a house - small, and a vehicle - economical) and we make the most of our vacation days every year. And yes, we also eat ALOT of meat (which we actually buy from a local organic farmer, and overall it is MUCH cheaper, not to mention healthier, than buying from a grocery store). Truthfully, I don't feel bad about my lifestyle.
    I'm not saying that I agree with wasting non-renewable resources, and just dumping garbage freely, and not recycling or anything like that... we are humans, with cognitive ability, not animals... But the reason I have a job is so that I can live life to what my version of 'its fullest' is. I am curious to know if you ever feel torn? Because really (and this is merely my opinion - like I said, I've struggled with this for years), unless someone is going to move somewhere and 100% live 'off the grid'... like almost completely disappear... we are all negatively impacting the earth, whether we like it or not.
    Your thoughts?

  2. Good for you Maren! I think you are doing something really great! Looking forward to seeing you Saturday night!