Thursday, October 1, 2009

Day 17 – 100 mile diet : Quiet night musings

I’m sitting alone in my living room, waiting for my husband to get home from helping out a friend tonight and I decided to write. I rarely have time to write on the actual day I post about and end up always writing 1 or 2 days late.

Tonight is the end of Day 17 and I feel pensive. I’m sitting here with a steeping mug of mint tea (from our own window mint plant) and I feel a little alone in the world.

I went searching for other Canadians that were doing the challenge at this moment. I was hoping to find a few blogs, similar to mine. Some friendly unknown faces that would understand what we are doing.

Maybe it’s because I got a little tired of people asking me what I think I’ll accomplish by doing all this. Maybe I was just a little hurt when I was asked when I was planning on cheating because they had ideas to make it a good cheat! Maybe I’m a little frustrated by people telling me they can’t wait for me to be off this “diet” so things can get back to normal.

I started thinking about what IS normal, and why I would want to go back there. The idea that I will emerge from this completely unchanged is naïve. The idea that the moment I am at freedom to do so, I will go out for a dinner filled with forbidden foreign fares is slightly unreal to me. The now, already familiar, simplicity of our lives will leave its mark and the idea of rushing out to buy pre-packaged, over processed foods doesn’t feel like us anymore.

Now don’t get me wrong, I have a list of foods as long as my leg that I miss and am looking forward to having again. But what we are gaining from doing this is so much more than what we have given up…

When November 18th arrives, I will continue:

  • Talking with the farmers that sell me my veggies come farmer’s market season. And they will know me to a point where they will pick out the biggest of everything out of their boxes under the tables for me just because it is me.
  • Reading labels and asking questions. Questions like “why buy balsamic vinegar imported from Italy when a local winery makes the best balsamic vinegar I’ve ever had?”
  • Making reserves of fresh local veggies and fruit, whether it be by canning, freezing or dehydrating, so I can keep eating as local as possible when the growing season has ended and the long Québec winter sets in.
  • Setting up appointments with the strange lady-herbalist that has native Canadian healing gardens in her backyard and buy teas from her.
  • Driving an hour along the river for flours made from local and certified organic grains for 1.60$ a kilo. Why? Because the ladies that run the shop at the mill know the names of the farmers that supply them by heart, so they feel like my friends.
  • Taking pride in the wonderful food growers and makers of my community and support them year round.
  • Pushing myself to learn how to live a local life as much as I can. And although I will indulge in far away luxuries, I will remember where I’m from and be thankful for what I have.

I do apologize to all of our loved ones, family and friends, that think this an eccentric phase and only a quirky fad, but we are changing. Things won’t simply go back to normal…

going back to normal was never part of the plan.


greenfession said...

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Daisy Soap Girl said...

Good for you. They say that if you something for 21 days straight that it becomes a habit. Keep up the good work. I am inspired by you and your recipes.

The Mindful Merchant said...

Isn't it funny how people have difficulty with change...even if it is a change in others? Well done with sticking to your challenge, I have enjoyed reading your experiences so far. Where do you buy local balsamic vinegar? I would like to stop buying our imported Italian brand and we use it a lot in our cooking. Thank you. :)

Yanic said...

Thank you guys for the kind encouragement!

Daisy Soap Girl : The recipes come pretty easy cause I've been around a mom that has always been good at creating food from what she had. Now I won't lie, I may be making it look easier tha it is. But we are having a great time of it!

Mindful Merchant : Funny enough, we have found the BEST vinegars (including balsamic) from local wineries. You should check your local vineyards and ask if they make balsamic. I betcha some of them do!!!

Thank you again both of you for reading! I appreciate the support and interest!

elle said...

hey yanic.... just thought you should know that you are not alone! there is a group of people here doing a 100 day 100 mile challenge. just google "vernon bc food security" and the challenge should show up. i'm only doing the 50% challenge because i have waaaay too much stuff in my pantry and freezer that need using, but many people are doing the 75% and 100% challenges too.
i will be doing a 100% challenge in the future, except, i won't be as diligent as you! i will keep spices, olive oil and baking leaveners... just can't live without it! best of luck to you!

Yanic said...

Elle :

Thank you so much for bringing this to my attention! I've actually gone and read quite a bit about the challenge in your town and find the level system quite inspiring. My husband and I think we will go silver after the challenge is over. That way, we can still feel like we are doing our share!

Good luck and keep in touch!