“Greenpeace!” What do you think about it? A tall man with a long coat and white hair walks on for about five meters. He stops, makes a half turn and looks back from the side of his eye.
The most interesting conversations are those with people of whom you know in advance that they will not sign the donation paper. These are conversations where the purpose is gone. It has been two weeks now that I have worked as a fundraiser for Greenpeace. Cold weeks, I have to say, but they went well and they were much fun. The team we started with consisted of four people. I am the oldest with a few years difference, but I found out later that some team leaders are older than I am, so I fit. I was succesfull in the first week already, and I have kept a steady level of 1 subscription per shift, higher than the average of all fundraisers. I like the team leaders, and even if I’m not a big talker, it feels good to speak with many people on the street. And the ”NO!”s are gone as soon as they are spoken.
“I have transferred some money to Greenpeace at the end of last year. I do that every year. You know? When I clean up.” There is an intriguing look in the man’s eyes. A freedom. The feeling is reciprokal, I can tell. “But to be honest I think that there are just too many people on the planet. We are not allowed to say that nowadays, but it’s true”.
I used to say this when I was younger, but I stopped that. Nowadays I say that all individuals consume too much. I’ll have a conversation about this with a religious guy in half an hour. But this tall white haired man agrees with the idea. We talk about the system. Can it be changed? I seem to be among the few who honestly believe it can. But that doesn’t matter at all. What matters, is that we met. Had a short chat. Changed each other unnoticeably. Left again.
“Sometimes you talk with people for a very long time without subscribing them.” Says my team leader. Zero subscriptions for the three of us today. But he’s right. Sometimes I do.