we were excited – can you tell?

probably the cutest girls there

these people were not messing around

trade school


I finally made it to Trade School– something I have been wanting to do ever since I first heard about it. Started in 2010, Trade School is an alternative learning space where students barter with teachers to attend. Anyone can teach and anyone can attend. I absolutely love this idea, and though we were packed like sardines in a tiny room, it was a fantastic experience. In exchange for some granola, I spent a couple of hours learning about eco-roofs. I wasn’t quite sure what to expect but I can now say that I know the difference between white, green, blue and brown roofs. Additionally, I walked away with some very practical knowledge. Perhaps the most interesting thing I learned was that New York is a combined sewer system – the opposite of what I am used to in Southern California. What is a combined sewer system? To put it simply, combined sewer systems collect sewage AND storm water runoff. In southern California storm water runoff goes directly to the ocean. Why, might you ask, is this so interesting?¬†Two reasons: 1. Pretty much every time we get more than 0.4 inches of rain in New York (basically every time it rains) the sewer system overflows and that filthy water goes straight into our watershed. 2. There is something we can do to help when this happens – don’t shower, wash your clothes or run the dishwasher. The more water being fed into the sewer system means more water overflow.

I also found out about this¬†awesome exhibition at the New York Botanical Garden. I will no doubt be visiting in the next few days before it’s gone.

photo courtesy of www.iaac.net

photo courtesy of http://www.iaac.net