Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Empress Garden

I was reminiscing today, about Empress Garden. Anyone who grew up in the 'camp' area of Pune city, India would know what I'm talking about. This huge park has beautiful botanical gardens, elegant ponds and a canal where all you needed was a stick and a worm to catch little river fish.

EmpressGarden was a treat to kids, its gargantuan trees an escape from the sweltering summer heat. My mom took my sister and I (and a huge entourage of our friends) there practically every weekend. We packed sandwiches from our favorite cafĂ© (Marz-O-Rin – remodeled and still awesome btw), and spent the day at the park running around, playing hide and seek and Cricket (contrary to the notion, a very fun sport, one of the positive fixations the British left behind).

So given the fond memories that I have, I was very upset to hear that they are tearing down a lot of the area to construct apartment homes.

To my friends back home, there's a petition that you can sign with the local government to stop destroying the area. Not only will we lose the one tranquil area in the midst of the crowded inner city, but we risk looking much needed acres of flora.

The summers have only gotten hotter, where is the escape?

Monday, April 23, 2007

How Did You Spend Earth Day?

It pays to have friends in high places, or should I say, it pays to have friends in the entertainment business!

I was in L.A. this weekend, catching up with old friends. My friend 'W' recently started working for an entertainment company that owns posh nightclubs and restaurants in the Los Angeles area. Needless to say, since I was seeing him after a year, he made sure he took me drinking ........in style.

We were VIP's at a posh bar on Sunset boulevard; they played the best music, fixed the strongest cocktails and, I had an amazing time. (Thank you WP!)

As cool as the place was, they used re-usable plastic glasses and had jazzed-up recycle bins in their restrooms. Hows that for super-cool?

Lesson learnt: You don't have to loose the diva in you to be a little more world-friendy.

Here are 5 World Saving Tips to do your share without losing your social life, your pocket book or your sense of style:

1. Change a Light Bulb
2. Donate used goods: " One person's garbage is another's treasure"
3. Water.. don't waste it
4. Use your own bag. Canvas bags cost under $5 and can be found in many stylish designs.
5. Walk, Bike, Carpool, Ride the Bus, Take the Light Rail.

Saturday, April 21, 2007

Have You Loved Your Earth Today?

April 22nd is Earth Day. We mark off dates to celebrate our loved ones, parents and great presidents so why not a day for the planet that we live on?

Last week, as I walked down a street in San Francisco, I noticed that PG&E had posters and banners to celebrate the event. I received over twenty emails from friends telling me that I could recycle old electronics at Walmart, I should stop using plastic and take some time out on the weekend to donate my old clothes to Goodwill.

But my queston is, is one day enough? Or, do we need a little more to say thank you for clean water, green grass and the little birdies in the trees?

So, stop for a minute, look around and celebrate what we've got. Happy Earth Day!

Sunday, April 01, 2007

Give Me Some of Your Tots

Seems like everyone is offsetting their carbon emissions these days, from presidential hopeful John Edwards to the organizers of the Super Bowl. But what about offsetting their kids?

A new venture called TerraTots is offering "child offsets" to parents feeling guilty over bringing wee ones into the world. For $100, TerraTots will offset the ecological impact of high-consuming little Emma or Dylan by working to reduce childbirths in developing countries through the provision of free birth control in underserved communities.

"It takes 20 Bangladeshis to equal the ecological footprint of one American," says TerraTot CEO Nick Benedict, "so to offset your kid, you need to prevent the birth of 20 kids in Bangladesh." He emphasizes that all the family-planning services TerraTots offers are completely voluntary. Hollywood celebs have already jumped at the newest marker of green cred -- Julia Roberts has offset her twins, and Gwyneth Paltrow was overheard bragging how eco-friendly Apple and Moses have become.

Attributed to grist.com

Happy April fools day!