Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Eating and cheating

Temperature in the lower forties, a bit too much wind, quite a bit of sun... so a friend and I met at the Morton Arboretum just before 11:00 this morning and walked through the woods until 1:15. Plenty of mud, no foliage to speak of, but good conversation and exercise.

We had lunch at the Ginkgo Restaurant by the big window overlooking the pond, where an egret was flying back and forth. It's the perfect place for people who are trying to eat cheaply but desperately want a restaurant meal: ask for a half portion of whatever salad attracts you. Mine was an ample plateful of romaine lettuce, goat cheese, dried cranberries, and walnuts, with poppyseed dressing and a roll on the side. All for $3.75.

Tonight Mr Neff and I were invited to a dinner in honor of a guest speaker at Wheaton College: green salad, whole wheat roll, chicken in lemon sauce, potato fingers, lightly cooked broccoli, chocolate cake, coffee.

I am certainly cheating. If I were really on food stamps, it is unlikely that I would have an Arboretum membership (without it, I would have had to add the $11 admission to the price of my lunch), and I probably wouldn't have been invited to tonight's dinner either. The Lenten Experiment has not shown me what it's like to be poor. I can cheat whenever I want to. I can take a week off like I did last week. I can get interesting, inexpensive ingredients at stores that aren't available in low-income neighborhoods. And I only have to keep this up for four more days.

1 comment:

Erika Haub said...


I just wanted to write a quick note to say how much I have enjoyed reading your reflections. Thanks for making your own journey public.