frugal confession #22


Over the last three weeks I have seen many different ways to be frugal. In Italy, most people walk whenever they are in town to accomplish whatever goals they have. Shopping often involves one's own cloth or other bag brought along for the purpose. Most will stop at fresh produce stands for vegetables and fruit while at a butcher for meat and a bakery for breads.

On the shop owner's end, they have the usual plastic bags for those who came unprepared, but most items sold are small enough to go without wrapping or using a bit of paper in which to gather items together.

If the urge to relieve yourself comes while out and about, you will not find a public washroom without some effort and a few coins. Yes, you must pay a fee for using the washroom. It will cost you from about 50 cents to a buck-and-a-half, depending on the city you are in. If you would prefer not using the public toilets, one can stop at a café or restaurant and order a small item, which may cost that same buck-and-a-half or more, but at least you get another taste of Italy in the process. The theory here is frugality with resources. Toilet paper, water, someone to clean them, they all cost money and wear on the environment, so why not pay directly for these?

Many of the trash bins all around are grouped with recycling bins as I described in another blog. My favorite one to see out is that for compostables since often what's left from a snack is just that. Gelato can be eaten from a cup and that cup is compostable. Banana wrappers are also compostable (weren't expecting that were you) and they make another fine snack.

Frugality is a must with space in medieval towns, and the citizens with vehicles there generally have tiny ones (think Smart car or Fiat), which fit neatly together on a narrow road and maneuver precisely into tight parking spaces. All buildings rise up several stories to accommodate people instead of spreading across a large area to fit the same number. Space in homes is more limited that what Americans are accustomed to, but the only reason for them is to cook, gather for meals and to sleep. Living life happens outside.

#researched #frugalconfession

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