Green Riders Doing Good Deeds Across Europe- Week 1

This is a guest blog by Gray Harrison from the Green Riders.

Hello dear readers! 

Lexi here, writing to you from Champvert, France. I thought I would give an introduction to what we plan to do with these blog posts. We are going to aim to have one Green Rider write a new blog post every week. These posts will give an overall summary of what our week has looked like while also evoking the personal experience of the rider who is writing the blog. They will touch on where we have biked through, where we have volunteered, and what the overall feel of the trip and group has been. Additionally we will share separate posts that will be short biographies of all of our Green Riders as well as highlights of some of our hosts and projects. 

Our first blog post is written by a first-generation Green Rider, Gray Harrison. A retired teacher, Gray hails from Fort Collins, Colorado where he volunteers his time to working on bicycles for their homeless population. He takes his bicycle skills and knowledge to the Green Riders tour where he always finds the time to help our riders with all of their bike ailments even after riding all day and doing other good deeds like picking up litter. Here is what he has to say:

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Green Riders Visit and Volunteer at the Community of Troglobal

This is a guest blog by Maya Madjar from the Green Riders.

On June 3, 2019, the Green Riders arrived to our very first project location near Grezille, France. After being received and treated so well by our first two hosts, we were all in good spirits for our third day of riding. I was in the group of the first Green Riders to arrive thanks to a sneaky shortcut we scoped out after lunch. Manoocha, a woman of boundless energy, welcomed us warmly and gave us a tour of the community that would soon catch everyone by surprise; the entire commune consisted of caves. Each varied in its color, shape, and size, yet they all carried the central theme of a dreamy and eclectic multi-cave house. Included in the layout was a library, communal kitchen, shower, and several hostel-like sleeping rooms alongside a private room with a greenhouse at the top. This may seem like a first-draft introduction to a fantasy book about a family living in caves with stained glass windows surrounded by fields of poppies. However, I am not here to fool you, and this is an actual place called “Troglobal.”

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Growing and Foraging 100% of My Food – Day 200 Video Update

For one year I am growing and foraging 100% of my food. That means no grocery stores, no restaurants and not even taking a nibble from a friends garden or pantry!

You might imagine me in the countryside living off the land or on a farm. On the contrary, I live in the urban environment of Orlando, Florida, in a 100 square foot tiny house that I built with repurposed materials. With no land of my own, I garden the front yards of people in my neighborhood and share the bounty with them. I take trips to nature to harvest salt from the ocean, coconuts to make coconut oil, wild yams bigger than my head and dozens of other wild foods. I also forage for food all over the city, where people walk by every single day, without ever noticing the abundance around them.

Food Freedom began November 11th 2018 and will go until November 11th 2019. This video was filmed on day 200 and released on day 208 of the project.

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Switching to Natural Fiber Clothes- Starting with ONNO Shirts

One of my longterm goals has been to transition away from plastic clothes and switch to 100% natural fiber clothing. I love the idea of being able to lose my shirt in the woods and know it’ll become soil in a relatively short period of time. I love the idea of being able to compost my clothes once they are too worn out. I really love the idea of dying in my clothes in nature and to not be littering in the process.

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How High School Student, Ella Diamond, Took Action to Reduce Food Waste in Her Community

Guest blog by: Ella Diamond of Food Waste 4 Thought

Have you ever tossed out a mushy, old head of lettuce, thinking that it’ll break down
within a few days or a week? It’s only lettuce, you think to yourself. It’s natural, so it must not
take too long to decompose. Shockingly, landfill excavations have found instances of it taking 25 entire years for a head of lettuce to decompose! When food gets dumped in landfills, it tries to break down, but it doesn’t have the available oxygen, causing it not only to remain intact, but also to release methane gas
into the atmosphere. This greenhouse gas, more potent than carbon dioxide, makes food
waste a main contributor to climate change as it accounts for the largest source of municipal
waste in landfills. Meanwhile, a staggering one third of food produced worldwide is wasted when this
food could be feeding all of the world’s food insecure individuals.

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Alternatives to Toxic Detergents- SmartKlean, Soap Nuts and Biodegradable Soaps

I definitely get dirty A LOT, whether it’s in the garden or just constantly spilling stuff on myself, but as you might have noticed in my photos and videos I also try to keep pretty clean. At the same time, I do my best to keep clean in a way that doesn’t pollute our home.

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Planting 100 Fruit Trees with The Fruit Tree Planting Foundation

Last summer I had a film team from South America come to shoot a documentary about my life for TV in Latin America. They offered to pay me $5,000 to spend a week with me. I explained that I don’t accept any payments from media but that they can donate $5,000 to a nonprofit to do good work with. I chose the Fruit Tree Planting Foundation and together we’d plant 100 fruit trees.

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Growing and Foraging 100% of My Food – Day 111 Video Update

For one year I am growing and foraging 100% of my food. That means no grocery stores, no restaurants and not even taking a nibble of a cookie or sip of beer at a party for an entire year!

You might imagine me in the countryside living off the land or on a farm. On the contrary, I live in the urban environment of Orlando, Florida, in a 100 square foot tiny house that I built with repurposed materials. With no land of my own, I garden the front yards of people in my neighborhood and share the bounty with them. I take trips to nature to harvest salt from the ocean, coconuts to make coconut oil, wild yams bigger than my head and dozens of other wild foods. I also forage for food all over the city, where people walk by every single day, without ever noticing the abundance around them.

I am so excited to share this video with you. I am about 1/3rd of the way through the project and this is the first video I’m releasing in documenting the year. It serves as both an introduction to the project and a day 111 update.

Green Riders Good Deeds On Bikes- Europe Tour 2019

The Green Riders are back at it again. This time, cycling across Europe!

I am so elated to see the good deeds continuing on. I won’t personally be on this tour, but I will be there in spirit and supporting from home. The following is an announcement of the 2019 tour and all the details one would need to get involved, written by the Green Riders team.

-Rob Greenfield

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