Supermarket-free Me: Day 9

Determined to counterbalance the environment-trashing trip to Boots on Saturday to buy disposable nappies in the car, we decided on a bus trip to Portobello, ‘Edinburgh’s seaside’.  Portobello is a unique area of Edinburgh, famous for its history and sense of community.  It has a long high street with a good selection of local shops.  I was interested to see what we could buy on a Sunday afternoon and – bonus, we thought – the kids will love it!

The children, it turned out, didn’t love it.  They weren’t that keen on being forced out on foot and as we walked to the bus stop (five minutes away), I realised that since we’ve had our second child we over-use the car for convenience.  This includes our supermarket journey.  The short bus journeys to Portobello and back were the successes we’d hoped for but to be honest, despite our 1:1 ratio of adults to children, it was a big hassle to keep our very young children happy, safe and to stop them picking up random objects in shops.

Sunday shopping in Portobello was reasonable.  While a lot of the shops take the day off, there were enough open to pick up the small selection of things we needed. There was a good fruit shop where the prices in general seemed reasonable and a number of small grocery shops – some looked independent and others from what I can deduce from the internet were franchises.

We turned the children’s mood around for the better with a visit to Skylark bar and bistro.  Again, from my amateur internet investigations, this seems to be a small independent venture but they do state that they make an effort to source much of their food locally.  It was a really busy place with a great atmosphere and a world away from our supermarket café!

A day later, this morning’s thrill came from a delivery man with our order from the Ethical Superstore.  Never have I seen two small children so excited about a mountain of toilet roll and tinned tomatoes.  The order did however come in an enormous cardboard box and inside there was some more packaging to keep all of the goods in place.  I started thinking about whether buying at the supermarket saves on packaging as perhaps more products can be held together with less cardboard and plastic?  Later I read some more feedback from the good people on hibs.net.   Someone had stated;

You also have to wonder how ethical multiple small deliveries of goods are compared to the centralised large scale deliveries to supermarkets.

A good point indeed and probably not one I’m going to be able to find out the answer to within the scope of this blog, but certainly something for me to ponder and get back on the internet to investigate…

Another helpful comment came via Twitter this morning in response to yesterday’s post suggesting that perhaps there is an internet cooperative selling nappies.  Something else for me to look into.  Thanks everyone, please keep the comments coming.

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