For more than two years now we've lusted for a Toyota Prius, but the circumstances have not yet been right — until last week. Mid-April we finished a very satisfying refinance while John was busy signing up three new piano students to completely fill his schedule. So after a few minutes of research online, we began our hybrid shopping at Magic Toyota in Edmonds, which turned out very well. Kevin and Tyson were extremely helpful at the dealership: we test-drove one Prius, predictably fell in love with it, got a favorable deal on it, bought it, and drove off that same afternoon with giddy grins.
That act alone will probably slash our emissions by 15 percent — our household's gas mileage just shot from 27-28 mpg to 45 mpg or above, since we'll use the Prius for at least 80 percent of our trips. So now we set ourselves a new goal: Can we still cut 15 percent from our CO2 output EXCLUDING vehicle use? Almost all our lightbulbs are changed, our heating habits are re-programmed, and we're better about managing waste. Let's see where that gets us. Game on.
(Oh, and anybody want to buy a perfectly OK '97 Taurus, whose only fault is not being a gas-electric hybrid?)
I think it's safe to say that, by the end of this experience, I won't be living in a yurt, or collecting my showering and drinking water through a homemade system of pipes and troughs that funnel the rain into a large stone cistern placed strategically on my Queen Anne condominium deck. In fact, it's quite possible that my eco-efforts will result in such a small, petty pile of nothing, that everyone reading this will hate me. Oh well. I can only start where I am — small, and yes, petty. So, with the bar set on the low'ish side, here's what's happening today:
During my morning shower, I turned off the water while I shampooed my hair. This saved at least 90 seconds worth of water. I felt cold during the 90-second break, but that's a sacrifice I am willing to make... at least for one month. As I was drying my hair it occurred to me that I could turn the water off while I'm soaping myself up as well. This would probably save another 2 or so minutes of water. I'll try that tomorrow, if I remember.
It's now 1:10 in the afternoon and my friend, Keri Learned, is holding a jewelry trunk show at a store on Queen Anne avenue. I sooooo want to drive, partly because I'm lazy and partly because I'm still feeling that not-needed third glass of wine from last night, but I'm going to walk because it's a beautiful day and this blog-thingy makes me accountable for my actions. Plus, a hangover isn't a good excuse for getting out of anything.