Evening! I’m drafting this post from quite a few miles high in the sky, as I make my way back to NYC. I’m happy you all enjoyed the weekend recaps—especially my thoughts on vegan dining in a non-vegan city.
I woke up this morning bright and early, and hit Chloe’s elliptical once again for a pleasant indoor workout. Some pushups later, it was breakfast time. I’d had my heart set on a smoothie—in fact, I’d frozen some bananas accordingly—but alas, I forgot that I was nearly out of almond milk. Blogger fail #2. No biggie, though: I opted for the same sort of oat bran breakfast I had yesterday, and it was delish:
Oat bran with banana, blueberries, chia seeds, and Justin’s peanut butter. Con café:
It may sound silly, but little moments like this—switching around breakfast plans because I’ve run out of something—make me grateful for how far I’ve come with my rigidity about meals and meal planning. I remember days of yore in which the slightest detour to my meticulously calculated meal plans (if we can call them that, since they were heavier on planning than they were on actual meals) would send me into an anxious tailspin. I’ve managed to preserve an organized attitude toward my meals, and I’m excellent at planning grocery runs, recipe prep, and so on, but I also know how to go with the flow when my almond milk is close to empty. And it feels great.
Chloe and Knud spent their morning meeting their future companion animal—a baby girl puppy with black fur and big, sweet eyes, whom I later got to meet via photos and video—but I had to hang back and master some calculus homework in preparation for the week ahead. Bummer, but I got it done with a little time to spare. In that time, I went out for one last, long walk around Chloe’s neighborhood. There are lots of things I love about NOLA: diversity, a rich cultural fabric, a great live music scene, and lots of history, to name a few. But what I might like best, at least for selfish reasons, is that it’s a walking friendly city, and I’m big on walks
I had a warm stroll to Audubon Park and back, and by the time I got home, I was in a time crunch to depart for the airport. I wanted veggies in my body ASAP, so I threw together a giant salad of romaine, white beans, peppers, carrots, mushrooms, an avocado dressing I’ll be writing about soon, and the last of my raw mashed potatoes. I may not have kept my eye on the dwindling almond milk, but I did a good job of estimating how much of the raw potatoes I’d want. It was a great, filling lunch:
And with that, it was off to MSY for a wistful parting with Chloe. On my way from NOLA to Charlotte (hi twins! Sorry I couldn’t delay my connection and hang wit u) I snacked on some of these nuts and dried fruits that were offered to me from the kind folks at Flanigan Farms some time ago:
I got two flavors of individual snack packs, and I’ve used both frequently as snacks on this week of travel. The nuts and seeds aren’t all raw, which is a bummer, since I prefer nuts that way, but they’re without added sweeteners or salt, and they’re packaged in 1.0 and 1.5 oz. bags, which I LOVE. It’s so hard for most consumers to eat a reasonable amount of trail mix—one handful becomes two, three, and ten—and the larger bags are really designed to keep us munching. Good for Flanigan Farms for putting aside the bottom line and packaging only so much as is a reasonable portion.
My flight to Charlotte was delayed, and I was pretty nervous about catching my flight back to NYC, but I made the connection with about two minutes to spare (some comical sprinting was involved). Once settled on my flight, I made myself an in-flight dinner:
That’s a) water, b) apple slices, c) raw, massaged kale salad, packed and brought from Chloe’s, and d) a Vega Vibrancy Bar – my favorite of all the commercial raw, vegan snack bars. Vega bars aren’t too sweet, the texture is ideal, and they’ve got a decent amount of protein:
The apples weren’t organic, and they had some preservatives in them, but I’d known that salad and a bar alone wouldn’t do, and it was either the snack pack or some really terrible looking red delicious apples, drowning in wax. The snack pack won, and actually didn’t taste bad:
As for my raw kale salad…well, when isn’t it awesome?
You know, I usually hate to eat on planes. There’s nothing less fun than being trapped to a seat on a very long flight as you digest, and moreover, it feels unromantic to eat on the go. Even so, we all have to do it sometimes—I’m not about to start missing meals when I travel—so make the best of it by laying out my food, appreciating each and every component, and packing stuff I know I’ll want to eat ahead of time. One of my strongest eating habits is to always try to make my meals ceremonious: back in my 9-7 days, if I was trapped at the office for dinner, I’d actually set down a little napkin and light a candle at my desk as I worked; nowadays, I’ll try to do similar things with my student meals on the go. (Lord knows what I’ll need to do when it comes time for clinical rotations one day.) No one’s perfect, and I have my share of slapdash meals on the go, but I do my best as often as I can.
And now, the plane is nearing my beautiful city, so it’s about time for me to put the netbook away (Ian, I use a Dell, and I love it). I’m so happy I made it to NOLA this weekend: my life has gone through such upheaval since the fall that I’ve felt a little unmoored lately. It’s rare that I get to spend time with friends, but the time I do have with them always seems to buoy me again.
And now, the smell of NYC streets and some long overdue phone catch up with M–whom I’m missing like crazy–awaits. Night!