I've just had a home holiday - well that's what I call it anyway.

Two weeks of pleasing myself - it was bliss.

I love travelling, seeing new places, trying new things - being adventurous - but sometimes it's just so nice to stay still.

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Well, not entirely still but you know what I mean. I stayed home, went for walks, gardened, read books, ate too much food and just relaxed.

I also spent time with family, including a bike ride along Marine Parade. I volunteered to ride the bike with the big bucket-like seat out in front for my 5-year old grandson to sit in.

I had ridden this bike before with said grandson aboard so I was full of confidence.

Off we went. After about two minutes we came to a slight incline - very slight.

My excuse is that there was someone in front of me and I didn't have a chance to get up any speed - so halfway up this slight incline I ran out of any speed whatsoever and we sort of toppled off.

He had a slight graze on his forearm, I was fine. Off we went again. But now every time I wobbled a voice from in front would say, "Nanny, stop wobbling and be careful".

The rest of the ride was lovely. When we returned the bikes we were asked how it went.

"It was lovely, thanks," I replied. "Beautiful day for it."

I looked down and there was Master Five standing with hands on hips.

"And, Nanny," he said.

I smiled and went to walk off but he was having none of that.

"Tell them, Nanny."

I had no choice - I had to confess. Oh yes, I said, we fell off.

The scraped arm was held up for all to see.

I should have learned by now there are no secrets with children around.

The last weekend of my break I had volunteered to collect for Pink Ribbon Breast Cancer outside New World in Hastings.

I did this last year and was keen to do it again. So once more I donned my pink wig and stood with the pink bucket in hand.

Two things really stood out. One, how friendly and generous people were and two, entirely unrelated to the collection, the number of people who had their own bags.

I feel guilty now when asked if I want a bag - no matter where I'm shopping.

There's no doubt that plastic bags have done a lot of damage to our environment and it is time we did something about it.

People have asked why we moved away from paper bags in the first place.

No doubt plastic ones are cheaper to produce but I think one of the main reasons we went for them was because they were so convenient.

They had handles, were easy to carry your groceries in, and they didn't tear as easily.

These days, though, they are so thin they can hardly bear any weight before tearing - which is another good reason not to use them.

There have been lots of things invented for humans to make our lives easier over the years but as we are finally learning that convenience comes at a cost.

Plastic bags are just the tip of the iceberg. Disposable nappies, plastic bottles, throw-away cups and containers, to name but a few, all have to land somewhere.

Our planet is simply not big enough to hold it all.

It's time we all dealt with a little inconvenience before it's too late.

• Linda Hall is assistant editor of Hawke's Bay Today.