These values came into focus for me this past Christmas, when I had a sort of sustainability epiphany. My husband and I invited two other couples for our customary Christmas Eve feast and, after a happy day of cooking came that wonderful moment when we all gathered at the table. As we passed the serving dishes, it dawned on me that this timeless tradition illustrated my own idea of sustainability in a nutshell. We do it without thinking. It’s as natural as breathing: each guest takes a portion, instinctively measuring how much to take so as to leave plenty for the others. Even if roasted potatoes are a guest’s favorite, he would never empty the dish and leave none for the others. We make sure everyone is served, and there is plenty for us all.
What I want for my family and dear friends, I want for others, for the whole world.
I wouldn’t take all of the potatoes. Neither would you.
Could it be that simple? It’s a start.
[Carol Roig is director of community outreach at Sullivan Alliance for Sustainable Development. She serves on the Town of Highland’s Committee on Energy and the Environment and is co-founder of Concerned Highland Citizens.]