I have been struggling for days on end with this post. As a sustainable travel blogger, Earth Day should be a pretty big deal, right?
I could share eco tips, round-up the array of worldwide events, or even talk about global climate change. But none of this has felt right, and until just a few minutes ago, I’d spent some painful hours with a blank screen, wrestling the knot in my stomach.
I’ve decided to come clean with you. I’m starting to find Earth Day a bit unpalatable.
For me, the easiest way to put it is to say it’s akin to Valentines Day. Yep, I’m one of those people – those who get pissed at “having” to buy a ridiculously inadequate greeting card or ecologically atrocious red roses to prove my love for the most important people in my life, according to some strange societal code. You won’t find chocolates or candlelight at our house on Valentines. I figure if I need to be reminded once a year to tell my sweetheart what he means to me, there is something crucially wrong with our relationship!
But I know we all get it, really. We all understand that our closest relationships have to be consistently nurtured. We thrive off of the exchange of affection, the feeling of connection, with others. Most of us make a point to tell the important people in our life that we love them all the time.
And this is what is starting to get to me about Earth Day. Most of us also inherently know that we can’t just use a single day out of the year to stop and ask ourselves, “Hmm… how are my actions impacting the planet?” Much like any other relationship, we know we have to keep the planet in mind all the time as we move through our lives.
We don’t have to be told the money we spend, the way we navigate each day, and the choices we make have an impact that reaches beyond us and around the globe. And we know that, likewise, we need to stay connected with our planet and let our actions carry our love for it everyday. Mother Earth likes the hearts-and-Hallmark treatment about as much as I do.
So, I don’t want to give you 10 Earth Day Travel Tips today. I don’t want to preach to you about how you should be recycling more, or flying less, and I don’t want to ask you to find a sapling to stick in the ground. I don’t think I need to remind you, especially today, that climate change is a true and serious reality of our time. We both know we’re better than that.
I absolutely commend all the wonderful things that people are doing to commemorate Earth Day today. But I have no instructions or recommendations on how I think you should mark this one day of the year. I only invite you to join me in reflecting on the sheer awesome beauty of the planet we are privileged to share and celebrate it’s undeniable importance in our lives.
(I found this video to be quite helpful in my reflection. 🙂 )
And maybe then let’s move forward with the rest of the day, the month, this life, carrying the earth in our hearts with everything else we hold dear, always.
Earth Day heart by CARCA MAN