22 Sep 2013
“Hi! I will please have one Egg White Delight.”
Smiling, and excitedly awaiting the McDonald’s service girl’s reply, so many things were streaming through my head!
Firstly, the behind-counter hustle and bustle, reminding me oh-so-fondly of those high school days spent working at Wendy’s Old-Fashioned Hamburgers, was productive, organised, and all around impressive. In fact, the commanding manager perfectly resembled my old boss. I thought, “Is it possible? Different restaurant, same industry? Can it really be her? Fifteen years later?” So, I took the plunge. Questioning the cashier with hope because I really adored that boss, I asked, “Is that woman’s name Jeanie?” She replied, “No, it’s Joni. But you were close.” And she cracked a smile, indicating that she realised my ultra discomfort with being in that environment. She knew I was a little lamb in the big fast food city, and she was so nice to me.
“Do you want two for three?” she asked with her sweet Southern accent.
“Huh?”, I replied inquisitively.
“Two Egg White Delights for three dollars.”
“Hm, will my sister eat two? Or just one? Okay for her calorie budget? Or no?”
“Two! And I’ll have the hash brown and orange juice to complete the combo. Please.”
She said, “No. You don’t have a combo.”
“What do you mean?”
“You have the two for three.”
I said, “Oh my goodness, I am so sorry. Can I please delete my order and start over?” I think she wanted to pound her head on the counter in response to my flighty cheer, but she persisted with superb customer service.
At discussion end, I had ordered one Egg White Delight meal which included one Egg White Delight McMuffin, one hash brown, and one very large orange juice. This wasn’t Starbucks, for sure. They don’t call out names for skinny vanilla lattes and iced triple filtered waters that one orders for their dog. Instead, once payment is rendered, people listen for numbers, like a happy game of Bingo; and when the number is called? Their food is ready. I was 324.
Paying with cash, I knew NOT that fast food restaurants accept credit cards nowadays, as American Express would have been my payment method of choice. I was, indeed, out of my familiar territory. :) Change, $13.82.
Waiting so nervously for 324 to be called, hoping I wouldn’t trip and fall on my way to the counter, the kind cashier motioned toward me, “I have your orange juice.” I replied, “Oh, Thank you!” I thought, “That makes sense. The order-taker fulfills drink orders. They’ll call my number when the food is finished.” But seconds later, she motioned toward me again with her adorable accent, “I have your Egg White Delight.”
So, they never called my number. Discombobulated and flustered due to this surprise change in procedure, I exited from the wrong door, returning to my sister for whom the purchase was made. And guess who was staring into the main window, waiting for her mommy. Aw!
Proceeding to Starbucks, (Egg White Delight, sister, and dogs in tow), I purchased a coffee and Evolution bar for brekkie. And we feasted outside. Me with my health food. And Stephanie with her health food. Egg White Delights, hash browns, and sugary orange juice is healthy to my sister because it satisfies her calorie budget, and it tastes good to her. It makes her feel healthy.
I, on the other hand, found my food to be healthy because it featured pepitas, almonds, raisins, and cranberries! All perfectly nutritious. And pretty! To me. But to my sister, they’d be too high in fat and calories. During my early eating history, calories were king. Now it’s pepitas and dogs. :) Calories are just court jester.
Just the other day, however, my friend Becky and I were discussing something very similar. Eating dark chocolate-covered Mediterranean sea salt sprinkled NuGo bars for our breakfast, she exclaimed with great pleasure, “Ohhh these are amazing! They are better than… And they taste like candy bars! Oh, candy bars! What a candy bar, indeed!” Slightly offended at her mention of “candy” being present in my diet (“She must think I’m so chubby because I eat candy everyday” I thought) she continued, “The Raw Revolution bars are delicious, too. And they’re ACTUALLY healthy bars.”
My response, offended, and haughty: “No. Raw Revolution bars don’t do it for me. And ACTUALLY, they feature 70 calories more per serving then NuGo in some instances. NuGo is much better, in MY book.”
Becky, aged 61 and, in my opinion, healthier than B.K.S. Iyengar, replied that she needs to eat things that support keeping her body healthy. Mad, I thought, “She doesn’t get it. She’s not in the Bulimic Mafia. Whatever.” But as the day wore onward, I reviewed my history of weight fluctuations due to Bulimia or not, and I was astounded. To consider myself as a high and mighty nutritional expert, and to discount Becky’s food brain when clearly she’s found the wonderful secret, having been able to maintain near to 100 pounds for most of her life, is simply irrational. Against my principles of living. Furthermore, as evident from the past nine months of exploring a freshly foraged high raw diet, compliments of my dear Becky, my body is getting to its small place again. And I’m not starving. I’m not drinking alcohol in place of food. I’m not aware of every calorie, and I don’t really care about this lack of control. Sometimes, even for we the most stringent of perfectionists, unleashing the control feels exhilarating!
Here are a few examples of recent food concoctions by Becky.
Even Gwendolyn was intrigued! Find her snout!
Another take on her Raw (Hot) Falafel with (Hot) tea!
It was perfectly warming after a chilly play date with friends.
And when I became so overwhelmed with my business and had no time to fetch food, Becky surprised me with a raw vegan lunch. What was it? How many calories existed in it? Who knows. But it tasted gorgeously. And it did the energy trick. I trust Becky.
And, due to this healthy nourishment, I was able to continue forward with walking these gorgeous darlings. I call this one, “Girls just want to have fun.” ;)
My recent meals are not completely raw! We also have done gorgeous Thai soup in the late night hours.
With wine. ;)
And sometimes brown, steamed rice, if I’m still hungry, served upon fabulous Oscar Wilde literary cocktail plates by Restoration Hardware.
But only 50 percent of my family is high raw. The other 50%, Gwendolyn, is 100% raw. ;)
Yesterday’s lunch: seaweed salad (non-raw but vegan)! With Diet Pepsi which is rarely present in my diet, but I stocked it for my sister; and it was crispy and delicious!
We’ve also been nourishing with sunlight.
And moonlight. :)
And back to my fabulous sister! In addition to Egg White Delights, she eats Hot Pockets. Correction: Lean Pockets. She shall chastise me for implying that she eats the higher calorie version of her favourite food. A food that, despite being low in calories, is chockfull of processed ingredients, not raw, not vegan, not even vegetarian. But it’s her food. And it’s healthy, to my sister. After 14 years of searching for my health, I fully commend my sister for knowing what works for her. And apparently that’s Egg White Delights and ooey gooey Lean Pockets. :)
I’m still unsure of what works for me, but I’m more convinced everyday that it’s absolutely a whole foods plant based diet. It’s the how much, how little, and what nutrients that perplex me. Although I do have a pretty good idea. ;)
What criteria do you consider when making your food choices?