We've written many times about things we miss while we're at sea or just things we can't find in foreign countries. Crunchy green things for salads, fresh blueberries, green chiles, ground turkey … cars … washing machines … blenders. We manage just fine without, but it's always a treat when we get to have these things again. We certainly appreciate them more. For sure, one of things I miss most when we're at sea is fresh produce and I try to get my fix whenever we're ashore. Sometimes, even when we're in port, finding a good variety of freshies nearby is a challenge. When we're in Boston with Lin, we head to Trader Joe's. When in Las Vegas, Mary and I usually head to Sprouts Farmer's Market, first thing. It allows me to OD on the beautiful displays of freshies … unbelievable variety ... apples, oranges, pears, pomegranates and pineapples ... salad makings galore and everything from parsnips to peaches and kale to kiwi.
Instead of planning meals based on what's left in the larder, (pickled beets, lentils and tuna?) we plan more appealing meals and buy to suit our tastes on a given day. “Let's have roasted root vegetables tonight”, Mary suggested. And so we bought golden beets and parsnips, carrots, red potatoes and onions. We threw in some butternut squash and Brussel sprouts for color and good measure. We prepped the veggies, then Mary tossed them lightly in olive oil, salt and pepper and popped them into the oven to roast. She didn't even worry that it would use up too much propane. Oh, my … delightfully tasty, yet nutritious … a winning combination served with basil chicken sausage from the grill.
Though David might miss the food aspect of things, he rarely complains. He does miss the space to work on his projects, access to more tools (if that's possible) and watching football. Here in Las Vegas he has space, several projects he's volunteered to do for Mary and a whole cache of tools. He's installed new LED overhead lights in the kitchen and added more lights over the breakfast counter. He's replaced a temperature sensor in her all-electronic Samsung fridge-freezer. He doesn't like moss growing on his boat shoes.
Especially at this time of the year, however, his passion for watching football comes to a crescendo. On the boat, we never watch games and rarely even get to listen to them. It's one of America's autumn pastimes and he usually misses out. Not this year. It's play-off season and Sunday afternoons are usually spent watching a game … or two. Of course, that requires a TV, as well as access to the sports channels, and luckily Mary has both.
Now, how do freshies and football connect, you ask? Beyond the fact we miss both things while we're at sea is the fact that not only do we eat healthier here and get to watch the football games now, but we eat (not always healthier) WHILE watching football games. We plan our football feast and shop expressly for it … chips and salsa, guacamole, beer, mimosas (champagne and OJ for Mary and me), spicy chicken wings with bleu cheese dip, crudite (that's the healthy part) and whatever else strikes our fancy. Me? Oh, I like football okay - I can take it or leave it, but I enjoy watching with everyone and then there's the mimosas. Did I mention the mimosas?