Friday, 10 February 2012

Simple Meal Day

See previous post for a description of my "refugee meal." Today was the day.

7am Ate 3/4 cup of cooked rice with a little bit of oil for breakfast.
7:30 Started cooking rest of rice and beans. Feel hungry already.
9am 1/2 cup of rice for snack. Feel good. Beans almost cooked. Deterred Kate from eating my rice.
11:10am Lunch: about 1 cup of rice and half of the precious beans with some oil and salt. Lots of rice left. I gave 1/2 cup of my rice to an insistent Kate. She mixed it with mustard and ranch dressing, then barely ate 3 bites.
1:30 snack: rice and oil; have been feeling fine, though a bit hungry/weak.
3:30 snack: a little bit of rice
5pm Supper: rice and the rest of the beans and oil. Fairly filling.
7pm snacked on the last of the rice. It went fast when there was nothing left to eat!

The day went fine. Other than feeling a little bit hungry, I felt good. I also felt a bit sleepy/tired around 3:00pm, likely from not having the protein that I'm used to (it's a bit of a familiar feeling from my regular eating troubles). I stayed home all day except for a good walk to Safeway and back, pushing both kids in the double stroller--it was decent exercise. The day was not too stressful other than dealing with some whiny kids.

I cooked the rice for about 25 minutes; the beans had soaked overnight so were boiled for 10 minutes and then simmered for an hour. The proportion of rice to beans is what surprised me the most. There is enough food for someone to live on, no question there. It seemed like too much rice, but when I saw how few beans there were to eat, and how quickly the oil disappeared, I was glad to eat the extra rice. While I felt a bit hungry all day, I'm sure after a few days my stomach would adjust.

I missed eating fruits and vegetables (nutrients). I missed snacking on things--I drank water instead. What must it be like for a refugee who has travelled for days or months from their home, lost everything (including, perhaps, some family members), and is malnourished, to receive a ration of rice and beans and oil from an organization such as Canadian Foodgrains Bank? I think it must be excellent. But I will gratefully continue to eat my many nutritious foods. I will eat rice and beans once or twice a month to remember what a good portion of the world eats every day.

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