Till I was seven I mostly only wore clothes that were "hand-me-downs" from my sister. Irksome as it may have seemed to me then, what perfect sense it is to recycle and give longer life to the possessions one no longer needs. This "management strategy" continues in my life and though it may often raise a few eyebrows, I really don't give a cats whisker that it may seem odd to others. Toys, furniture, cutlery, linen, clothes, home appliances such as fridges and water heaters, T.V's, suitcases, kitchen vessels....you name it, it's all been in the cycle of reuse in the homes of friends! Garments get refashioned and furniture revamped, books re-read and favourite toys renamed! Today 28 years on, my famous blue cycle is proudly ridden by my adopted grand daughter Aditi, to get to her basket ball practice sessions and dance class each evening.
Today perhaps it isn't economy alone that should prompt this pattern of living, but an understanding that our ecology needs us to rethink consumerism. On CNN today I saw a program on a woman who resells the posters of hoardings back to the advertisers via recycled merchandise such as bags etc. Such simple ideas are hugely effective and are in fact easy to implement.
I also read a lovely back piece in the Tehelka magazine of a young lady and her friends who gathered money for a humanitarian cause, and found that it was often the poorest or the young, who could share and give most generously. My teacher Nasreen Mohammedi perhaps was one of the greatest examples of simple living. During her life time she chose to live without the clutter of memorabilia or embellishment, and kept her needs to the minimum. In fact where can we take all that we accumulate once we die? I'm so glad that my parents were sensible people and instructed me with these simple life lessons that even today make sense. I get great comfort when I see Mithun also doing the same thing and Aditi following in the tradition too. It keeps the vhain from breaking.