Friday, August 13, 2010


I am obsessed with food. If a Genie popped out of a bottle right now, I would wish for a dinner at an all-you-can eat place for my sons and I, and the opportunity to go to ALDI and fill my grocery cart to the brim. At the buffet, I would stuff myself until my stomach hurt. At ALDI, I would select items without consulting the price and keeping that constant total in my head, having to stop when I reached my limit. I'm guessing the total cost of dinner to be about $30.00 and the full shopping cart, $70.00. Not a great deal in the grand scheme of things.

I go to our local grocery store on an almost daily basis to check the discounted meat and dairy at-code specials. If there isn't a 99 cent deal on a package of ground turkey or other meat, I leave empty-handed. But not before I have a chance to observe other people shopping and filling their carts. I look at what people are buying with a kind of sick fascination. I feel like a Peeping Tom as I contemplate the items in their carts. At the check-out, I wait to hear the final total on the purchases and get some of strange pleasure in hearing the really high totals over a hundred dollars. Oh, to be able to spend that amount on a cart full of groceries like I used to in the old days...

In a recent book I read, the main character decides what to fix as a light summer dinner coming up with egg salad and cucumber salad with iced tea. I drooled at that menu and added to it, a ripe, juicy tomato, maybe a fresh ear of corn. The seasonal fruits and vegetables are what I am missing most now. The thought of canned green beans leaves me cold. I think about frying up some new red potatoes and making a beet salad. To have to pass up the packages of blueberries and the nectarines almost makes me cry. I circle the produce section with my empty cart and watch the people select their tomatoes, strawberries and carrots.

I dream about going to one of our local farm stands and inhaling the smells of the produce. Or going into a bakery for the same sensations. I pass by a Dairy Queen and dream of an icy cold Blizzard or cone. This has been a Blizzard free summer. A pizza commercial airs and I dream of buying an entire pizza for each of us and not caring if there are any leftovers - a real fresh pizza, not the frozen ones I once in a while pick up as a treat. Once I even had the fantasy of getting a dozen Dunkin' Donuts and scarfing them down myself - and not worrying in the least about calories or high blood pressure.

My focus is on feeding my boys and doing the best for them. Sometimes that has meant that I've gone without or been the one eating a pb & j for dinner. I don't mind. It just has been catching up with me where I feel a bit hungry on some days and craving foods not in the pantry.

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