As modern, global citizens we should all be looking at how we can re-use, re-cycle or re-purpose the stuff we come across on a daily basis. I’m part of the middle generation that sits between parents of the 50s and 60s that made stuff last forever (my dad had his lawnmower for 30 years!) and the kids of today who are weaned on re-cycling (Bob the Builder has been telling them to “reduce, re-use, re-cycle” for years). Mine was the disposable generation, and still is in many respects, so having to recycle household waste came as a huge culture shock a few years ago. As with many things though, it becomes habit and eventually second nature to try and re-use or re-cycle items we would normally throw away.
And I’ve finally arrived at the point of this post. The picture above shows just a selection of the charity collection bags that have come through our door in the last month or so. I use them to collect the rubbish from the bedroom and bathroom bins each week but they still build up quicker than I can use them. Even if I thought giving our old clothes would help beat Blood Cancer (since when did it stop being called Leukaemia?) we don’t have enough old clothes to fill them! But I’m now loathe to just throw them in the bin.
I’ve now found another excellent use for them, which fills a hole in my backpacking kit list too! I always have at least two of these in the bottom of my pack – I keep them for river crossings. They are light, very light, and reasonably strong and they are big too, big enough to come up to my knees at least when you put your foot in them. Hence my thinking about using them as waders. In most cases rivers can be crossed without getting your feet wet, but there are times when you can’t. I’ve used these a couple of times now. Put one (or double bag for extra strength) on the bottom of each leg and knot the excess width at the top of your leg – this should be enough to keep them up for the time it takes to wade the river. Saves you the time and effort of removing boots and drying feet at the other side and means there’s no chance of feet injury on stones.
They are pretty much ‘one use’ as the chances of untying them and being able to tie them again is slim, but for short trips they may prove useful.