A few years ago, Mimi became aware of the many elderly French people often living very lonely lives and so joined forces with the Parisian organisation Voisin-age which arranges regular visits and sends cheery postcards with personal messages every morning to brighten up their day.
Less Me, More We
Mimi Xu believes that little gestures, like helping those you don’t know, can lead to large changes. Or as she puts it: “It should be less about me me me, and more about we — together we can create the world of tomorrow.” She spent her childhood living between Shanghai and Copenhagen and eventually ended up in Sydney. Since moving to Paris eight years ago, Mimi has been cutting the soundtracks to fashion shows for brands like Miu Miu, Acne and H&M, and DJ’ing at art and film events in Cannes, Milan, Moscow and beyond. Yet after a while something snapped and Mimi realised that there is more to the world than this “hip, self-involved, based around traveling a lot and having-a-good-time way of life” and so began meditating, an internal journey that led to her become more aware of her surroundings. “Whether it’s the environment, people, animals, friends or family — it’s only when we all become more conscious of these little gestures and positive vibes, that big actions can happen, even if it’s something as simple of encouraging organic farming by purchasing organic food as often as we can.” When it comes to music, Mimi respects the actions of Atoms For Peace, the musical project put together by Radiohead’s Thom Yorke, who only travel by boat or train. “Of course, I can’t afford to do that — though I do feel guilty for not dedicating enough time to the elderly who I’ve committed myself to help, as I’m always on the road. So instead, I send them a postcard whenever I can or give them a call and leave a message if they don’t pick up, just to keep in touch. I think that’s a real first step in contributing to a more positive society at large.”
Biofuel Powered Flights
In the making of this Ever Conscious, our contributors have frequently cited flying as the single act they feel most guilty about. Since 2008’s Virgin Atlantic flight fuelled with five percent coconut and babassu palm oil, Air France have been flying from Toulouse to Paris-Orly on a 50/50 blend of refined cooking oil and conventional jet fuel supplied by the Dutch biofuels company SkyNRG, cutting in half the CO2 emitted compared to a conventional flight. SkyNRG has since supplied biofuels to KLM, Finnair and Thomson Airways for medium and long-haul flights. As more airlines adopt biofuels, the economies of scale shall result in the price of their production dramatically decreasing, and biofuels could become a commercially viable option for airlines to power their planes.