No worries, I’m still alive. This is going to be a long one so prepare yourself.
This is what my leg looked like after surgery. Awesome huh. Tomorrow will be the three-week mark. Last week I was cleared to begin walking aerobically, so I started back to the gym this week. Things seem to be progressing well with the wound and I am able to look at it now without passing out. I am quite squeamish.
We made it to Europe! That’s why I haven’t been posting lately. We have been in the processing of coming over here and that was a feat. I am also proud to say that I am beginning to overcome my flying anxiety. The mental exercises provided by my former therapist really were helpful. I have a few pictures, but that is about it.
I was lucky to procure a vegan meal on the plane! I don’t have a picture, but it was really not that bad. It didn’t have a whole lot of flavor, but it worked well. Plus I brought some bars with me just in case I needed a protein fix. The meal consisted of an ambrosia type salad, a lettuce salad with balsamic vinegar, some rice with English peas and steamed asparagus and a whole wheat roll. The roll was not so good, so J was able to take care of that for me. I did have two cans of cranberry juice on the plane since I was really concerned about drinking too much water.
Once we got to the airport I had a Pure bar:
It was really good! I had not eaten the blueberry bar before, and I would definitely get it again, if it was less expensive.
Let’s back track though, because we went to breakfast at a restaurant in Orlando called Boma. J wanted a buffet breakfast and I had a coupon. Plus their buffet breakfast has probably the largest assortment of vegan items that I have found:
Watermelon, cantaloupe, wheat toast with strawberry preserves and some roasted potatoes.
I then got heavily into the carbs with my second final plate: quinoa, hominy, and more potatoes.
I also took J out for a date. He was really nice in helping me after the surgery, so he more than deserved it. We played mini-golf and followed that with a visit to the Big River Brewing Company in Orlando. J got a Pumpkin Pie Ale:
I enjoyed a nice penne pasta with marinara. It was really good actually. The sauce was definitely well seasoned with basil, which I love!
Then J wanted me to take a picture of his dessert, which was some sort of twist on chocolate cake, with several different types of chocolate. He was in love…
So those were the main food excursions prior to leaving the States.
Now onto Europe. We arrived on Sunday after some really great flights and a lot of missed sleep. We are still suffering from jetlag, as we were wide awake until about 0200 this morning. We have mainly been doing administrative stuff that really needs to be done prior to us doing any real “fun” stuff. However, I am already in Heaven. When we were driving in, I started to see bike/walking paths! The proximity of things really impresses me and I am looking forward to us getting a flat, because we hopefully won’t be driving around a lot. Right now we are living in a hotel awaiting word on a permanent living space. That is not so fun, but there isn’t much to be done about it. We do not have a car or driver’s licenses so that is somewhat limiting our mobility.
Last night a friend that is here for a few weeks took us to a Thai restaurant. It was probably the best Thai food I have had in a while. I forgot my camera, so no pictures, but it was basically pan-fried veggies and tofu in a soy based sauce. Yummy. Wish I had a picture.
In terms of availability of food, I went through the food store just to check for a few items in particular. Here is what I noticed:
– No hummus. I will be tweaking my own recipe so that I can try and replicate the olive hummus. Couldn’t find it anywhere, but I was just doing a quick walk through and not actually shopping. Is that weird that I window shop in a grocery store?
– No almond milk. I got some Soy Milk so that I could use it with breakfast, so I may have to revert back to soy milk and just scale back on my other soy intake. I try to limit my soy intake since the jury is still out on how the pseudo-estrogens in soy affect women’s health.
– They have Amy’s products. Not many but one is more than enough! They also carry some Boca, Morningstar and Smart Life products. I saw one package of tofu, but have yet to find tempeh, which may not be available.
– I didn’t check the nut butter section, but I am thinking that the likelyhood of them having almond butter is slim. I will have to make my own or work with PB for the time being.
– They have Smart Balance in tubs. I didn’t expect to find sticks because those are rare in the States outside of Whole Foods. I was grateful to find the Smart Balance though.
– Polenta! They have nice sized tubes of fresh polenta. Also some delicious olive salads and a quaint salad bar.
– Vitamin Water! I didn’t see the 10 calorie per serving VW, but they have the potassium supplemented water that I normally drink.
– Bananas are 91 cents! When we left FL they were 29 cents a pound. On the flip side, I was able to get a quart of blueberries for one dollar. The bananas were the big discrepancy in price that I noticed.
– No sandwich rounds. This will motivate me to learn to make bread sooner :).
Don’t take this as me complaining. Certainly not. I am on cloud nine. Just some observations from the store.
Now I have made contacts at the gym and have discussed the possibility of being a contracted personal trainer at the gyms. They also need group exercise instructors, but that is on a volunteer basis. I have also applied to teach at a local university, which is really my first choice with training being a secondary/supplementary option, but we will see.
In terms of weather, it really hasn’t been that bad. It is definitely not Florida, but it isn’t as bad as I expected. Apparently, we are no where near what winter is really like though.
I will try and post more regularly now that we are somewhat settled. Hope everyone is well!