Being the Green sort of people we are (we buy local products when available, have a small, efficient car, always take reusable bags with us when we shop and make use of public transpiration as often as we can – if the planet pulls through, you can thank us) my wife and I decided to participate in Earth Hour.
At the appointed time, we turned off all our lights and electrical equipment and then, instantly bored, decided to take a walk around town to see if anyone else was as daft.
Seeing as how this is a humor blog, and pointing out failure is funnier than relating how something actually worked, I was slightly disappointed to notice a difference. A small one, to be sure, but a difference just the same.
Along the High Street, lights glowed from the storefronts of the travel agent's, mobile phone shops and clothing outlets, but Jones Boots was dark, as was Swan Walk Mall, which usually has all its internal lights on for security reasons.
The Carfax was well lit up, but that likely had to do with public safety. Along the pathways leading over Albion Way and through the park, however, many of the streetlights were turned off, provided enough light for safety yet using half the energy. One wonders why they don't do this every night.
The District Council office buildings were suitably dark, though I have to admit I never really paid much attention to them before so they might be like that every night.
One building I do pay attention to is the new County Office building. Whenever I walk by it at night it sits empty, yet lit up as if they are trying to attract the attention of passing aircraft. Tonight was no different.
On a normal night this strikes me as a needless waste of energy, but on this night, you think they'd have at least made an effort, especially as they were one of the entities jumping on the Earth Hour bandwagon.
So, after forty minutes of wandering around town, nodding our heads in approval or tisk-tisking the offenders, we returned to our flat, turned on all the lights and made tea.
I'm all for saving the planet, but get real.
This is a photo I snapped of our block of flats as we returned from our Earth Hour perambulation. No, Grainger LTD is not participating in the event, this is what it looks like every night because all the security lights are broken and the landlord won't fix them. Don't get me started.