Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Fast food fast

Last Sunday I had two things to do. I needed to train someone in the morning and attend writers' group in the afternoon. Plan A was to come home in-between and grab a bite of lunch. Plan B was to have lunch out somewhere good if I didn't have enough time to go home.

That was all: Plans A & B. There was no contingency for finishing the training with only forty minutes to spare before writers' group - the time it would take me to drive there. But, as you may have guessed, that's what happened.

I needed lunch and I needed it fast. As I was driving between the two places my mind was wandering to where I could buy lunch. I wasn't desperate enough to buy McDonalds, Hungry Jacks (Burger King) or KFC and decided on Nandos.

It was a stinking hot day and the temperature inside Nandos was even hotter than outside. I was so hungry I was no longer thinking straight so went for a carb hit, ordering a chicken wrap and fries. The chicken inside the wrap was really tasty; I really enjoyed it. The salad was insipid after eating from the garden, the bread flavourless being used to robust whole grains and the chips left a film of grease in my mouth and just made me even more thirsty on such a hot day. I didn't stoop to buying a soft drink, ordering spring water instead, thankfully.

It's really hard to foresee every situation and I really think I had very little choice. Nevertheless, I've been beating myself with such comments as, "You could have had some fruit or nuts in your bag to snack on so you wouldn't have gotten to the point where you needed to buy chips" and "Maybe you should just always carry a packed lunch if you're unsure of finishing time." I certainly could have had lunch with me even on such a hot day since there is a fridge where I spent the morning. It's not always feasible to carry a packed lunch, however.

Anyway, I went against my principles and my lifestyle and really don't want to do it again. Any ideas on how I can plan better and avoid fast food on those rare occasions? I've discovered that even occasional fast food is too often for me.


Wednesday, February 13, 2013

The Power of Two, Maybe Three ...

The other day, Teenage Daughter and I had a lovely outing to the Central Market because we wanted to check out Wilson's Organics. It originally started as a stall in the market, then it moved into a small shop on Gouger St. Now it's on Market St, off of Gouger St, and has expanded even further. That tells me there is certainly a demand for organic products.

We had fun wandering around and looking at all the products that are available in an organic range. Most of them I've never seen at the supermarket. Then we ate lunch at the cafe there. We both had a tempeh wrap, overflowing with fresh veggies which we washed down with freshly juiced pears. As we sat eating I noticed that they had a steady stream of customers coming in and buying things.

Today it was back to the mainstream supermarket for me. I take no prisoners these days. I know by heart which brands are okay and which aren't. It's very rare that I have to use the Ethical Consumer Guide App on my phone. As I politely reached in front of an elderly woman studying various milks to grab soy milk for my boys, the woman asked me if I knew which brands were Australian. Did I know which brands were Australian??? You've asked the right person!

I talked her through all the brands of milk and then she and I had a general discussion about company ownership. She was savvy and had done some homework. I reached in my bag to find my paper copy of The Ethical Consumer Guide but, alas, it was in my other handbag. I did, however, tell her about it and she was adamant that she was going to google it and get hold of one. We said our farewells and then continued to shop. Each time we passed each other, we smiled the secret smile of belonging to the same club.

It felt lovely to know that someone else in the shop was as passionate as me about company ownership. There were two of us today; maybe more that I don't know about. Singer Arlo Guthrie in his song, "Alice's Restaurant" sings tongue-in-cheek that if three people do something it's an organisation. So, if there had been one more person shopping like the woman and me, it would have been an organisation. And if fifty people a day did it, it would be a conspiracy - to paraphrase Arlo!


Wednesday, February 6, 2013

When the Lights Go Out

We lost power around 9.15 this morning. When I called ETSA I learnt that it was a scheduled maintenance outing and that power would be restored by 3pm.

Teenage Daughter had just gotten up and was about to cook breakfast. She is the complete opposite to a picky eater. In fact, she is so opposite that she is also picky. If the food isn't complicated, pretentious or gourmet she turns her nose up at it. That presented a challenge for her. She could still have her poached eggs by using a match to light the gas stove but she couldn't have toast. She decided to use a wrap but was dismayed to learn she would have to wait for it to defrost as the microwave couldn't be used either. I just shook my head and wondered what was wrong with muesli. It is, after all, Carman's.

Just before the outage Husband had called and I'd missed it so I was forced to return his call on an old-fashioned - plugged - into - the - wall - phone complete with curly cord and receiver.

After calling Husband and ETSA on the curly cord phone I decided to rethink my day.

I'd have to wash clothes later in the day. That was okay because it was hot today so I knew they would still dry on the line later. But how would I keep cool with no air conditioner or ceiling fans?

Vacuuming was out of the question but I could still use the good old broom and dustpan and carpet sweeper.

But what would I do about my cup of tea??? I would boil the water stove-top. As soon as I'd had my tea I'd go out and run errands. That would accomplish something and get me out of the house, as well.

My laptop was fully charged so I could write a blog and work on the book but my phone had only just been plugged in to charge so I had no internet access whatsoever. Oh no!!!!

Forty five minutes after losing power it came back on and it was business as usual in the end!


Monday, February 4, 2013

A Lovely Morning in Blackwood

Today I needed to go to Blackwood to buy new receiver covers for my hearing aids. Teenage Daughter, who is STILL on holiday, asked what I was up to and, when I replied, asked if she could come along and the two of us have lunch together.

There are two ways to get to Blackwood - in the Adelaide Hills - from our place. One is taking main roads and the other is taking the windy back roads that go through the hills. Many years ago I would have opted for the former, not liking the windy corners. These days, however, I prefer the latter so off we headed through the windy back roads of the Adelaide Hills.

The program for Writers' Week is now available so our first stop was Mindfield Books to see if they had one. They did. Win. I would have made it out without buying any new books had I not seen a little children's book entitled, "Callum Loves Cuddles". Since Callum is the name of a male I'm particularly close to and he does, indeed, like cuddles I HAD to buy it. Ooops.

Once out of the bookshop, Teenage Daughter noticed there was a Salvos shop on the other side of the car park. Well, we had to check it out. Two skirts later, we left for the audiologist.

After the audiologist our final stop was Fancy Burgers, a restaurant Teenage Daughter had been wanting to try. It's a local place and we enjoyed our food.

The best part of the outing was the time I got to spend with Teenage Daughter.