Packaging

We confirmed our tickets for our trip to Mecca, Medina, and Bangladesh this summer. Alhamdulillah (praise be to God). Alhamdulillah a thousand times.

If there’s one thing I’ve never been able to get used to about North America, it’s the amount of garbage we needlessly make for ourselves. In the typical lunch I bring with me to school, I’ll usually have an individually-wrapped cheese snack, an individually-wrapped granola bar, an individual pack of yogurt, an individual bag of crackers, a Ziploc bag of veggies, a Ziploc bag of trail mix, and then my actual tupperware of lunch (yeah I pack heavy…). If I just think about how much garbage that is and how much I contribute, it does make me sick, especially when I reflect on why things are this way. We’ve convinced ourselves that our lives are so busy and that we’re so short on time that we need everything “individually wrapped for your convenience!” Why do trick ourselves into thinking we don’t have time to actually pack our own food into reusable containers? So that we don’t have to face the reality of how carelessly we treat this earth? Or so that we don’t have to look into our own lives to find out why we busy ourselves with such nonsensical schedules, to fill up our time, to distract us from… from what, exactly?

Maybe packaging isn’t really as dramatic of an issue I’m making it into. Maybe it’s really not a big deal that we fill hundreds upon thousands of landfills with this kind of crap, for billions of students/employees every single day–all in the name of “convenience.” All I know is that in Bangladesh, nothing comes prepackaged. No one can flippin’ afford packaging. So we buy our own fruits and veggies and we slice them up and pack them into tupperware, and we make our own rice and meat for dinner and we pack the leftovers for lunch, and we drink water because nobody bothers with sugary drinks or juice boxes. And that’s the way it’s been for centuries and maybe that’s one thing my country has been doing right all this time.

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