For many years, I have eaten my evening meal at any hour of the night right up to and even after, bedtime. A bowl of chili at midnight has been a staple in my diet since I was old enough to crawl up and get the crackers off the shelf. But as I have gotten older and my digestive process has begun to wear out, that little marvel of gastrointestinal activity needs more time to process the objects I consume. There is no more spending the evening snacking on a half box of Cheezits washed down with a Miller Lite and then ordering a meat lovers pizza a half hour before going to bed.
Even a normal meal eaten late in the evening will bring on sleep deprivation ; waking up in a cold sweat after unbelievable nightmares; being swallowed by the Pillsbury dough boy or even worse, the Hostess Twinkie company going bankrupt. All that dreaming makes me restless, tossing and turning until the fitted sheet pulls off my corner of the mattress.
In addition, there are a few items my G.I. tract now refuses to accept no matter the time of day; turkey pastrami and Jalapeno pepper sandwiches being one of them. The last time I ate one of those, the things that happened to my insides in the middle of the night could have sprung from the pages of a Stephen King Novel; god-awful noises emanating from my stomach caused by what I imagine were gargoyle like beings growling and gnashing their teeth right in the heart of my mid-section.
Therefore, as part of a new me in the new year, My wife, Susie, and I are trying something different in our retirement lifestyle. We have decided our noon meal will be the main meal of our day and we will eat lightly in the evening much, much earlier, no later than 6 o’clock.
Yesterday was our first attempt at this plan and the end result is that I woke up this morning ravenous. I could have eaten the back side of a… Never mind. Let’s just say I was really hungry. Not a problem, I decided, I’ll just have a nice breakfast; eggs, grits and maybe an ‘everything’ bagel .
Actually, when I say ‘not a problem’ that isn’t exactly true. Susie is not a big breakfast eater and will on many occasions, go without breakfast so she was not really receptive to this idea; as a matter of fact, she already had our blueberry yogurt and whole grain, 35 calorie toast on the table when I returned from walking the dog. This was not good news, biting into that diet toast is as close as I will ever come to swallowing a handful of sawdust. I started to protest vociferously; but in the interests of marital bliss, I decided to keep my observations very low key.
“Susie, I probably should eat something a little more substantial. I have ‘the sugar’, you know.” This was not the right thing to say. She hates that colloquialism some folks use to indicate they have Diabetes which, by the way, I don’t. I just like to see her reaction.
“You do not have ‘the sugar’. You have ‘the diarrhea of the mouth’ disease. If you want something else, have a bowl of cereal.” Cereal is another favorite of hers. It’s healthy and simple; Susie is not really keen on my making a mess in Fiona II’s tiny kitchen.
In case you’ve forgotten or never knew it in the first place, Fiona II is our fifth wheel camper. She is serving as our shelter from the harsh Florida elements this winter. There is no preventing a big mess when working in confining surroundings such as Fiona’s kitchen area. Making a mess causes another problem besides the mess itself and that is the water required to clean it up. It’s not that we’re short of water; we have plenty through a municipal hookup but here’s the rub; there is no sewer access. There are full hookup sites in the campground but the roomiest and most scenic sites are not among them. So we made the choice to do without a sewer hookup in order to have a campsite that overlooks the Estero river. Consequently, we are dependent on Fiona’s storage tanks to hold the wastewater until I can get around to emptying them. Other than saying that it’s a pain in the rear, I won’t go into the disposition of that wastewater, having complained about that in print more than once.
We are making a valiant effort to hold down our water use. Its amazing how little water is required to do a credible job of brushing your teeth, however breakfast dishes are a different story. You can’t use a teaspoon full of water to clean a dirty skillet or a plate with the remains of a dried out egg yolk scattered around like a Rorschach inkblot. For that reason, I didn’t argue with Susie about our breakfast choices.
I’m eating cereal and sawdu…, I mean, toast, this morning but I will not go gently into that good night. There has to be something out there I can eat that won’t mess up our kitchen or my stomach.
Now all I have to do is find it.
Note from Susie: I’m trying to keep quiet (a New Years resolution) but, with apologies to Jackie Gleason, One of these days, POW, …….