There have been many time on my travels when I have run low on funds and have had to tighten my belt in consequence. Never to the extent of starving - no - but trying to cover nutritional needs for the smallest amount of money spent as possible.
This a-z is about my personal adventures with food. however I cannot forget or fail to mention that on my travels I met and viewed thousands of men, women or children to whom food and eating was not an adventure to regale friends with back in the safety of home; people whose life depended on finding enough to eat each and every single day, who died of malnutrition or watched their children do so .
People whose daily nightmare was finding enough food to buy food or who watched the skies anxiously for the rain to grow the food to feed their families. There is I have read enough food produced in the world for this never to happen.
But it does.
Whoever controls money controls food distribution.
So this letter N must be read with that knowledge behind it.
I have had a very lucky life.
My first great adventure! was when I embarked on a trip to Orkney and Shetland with far too little money for the time I was going to be away. I had not realised either that food, back in the late 60s, was not so easy to get hold of on small islands in the seas. So breakfast at the B&B and a sandwich for the rest of the day. Maybe a treat of fish and chips.
Back then nothing was open on Sundays so the first Sunday it was only breakfast!
In Nepal, in the early 70s, I would go through my case of clothes and sell a couple of items to secure enough for cheap meals for the day. It worked and I had the advantage of less luggage to lug around:)
No food until I had money!
In Bangkok I existed on a tin of sardines, Chinese leaf, a roll, small pineapple and bottle of milk, for days as I awaited tickets to fly out of the country. It was the time of the oil crisis when airports around the world were closing down from lack of fuel. I needed those tickets to get out of the country before my money ran out. There was money waiting for me in Darwin I had enough to pay the cheap hotel I was holed up in for about ten days, so money was very scarce. As it turned out I had to fly to New south Wales as Darwin had been devastated by a natural disaster. It took weeks to get my money back down across the country. Fortunately I had a friend in Sydney to stay with - lucky because I arrived in Sydney with $15 to my name.
Not enough money.
On these last two occasions I was still recovering from a dose of dysentery so in fact wasn’t eating very much anyway.
Travelling to Darwin for work a year or two later then finding there was no work forthcoming,I phoned my friend in Sydney to send my tax rebate to me. She trotted to the bank to arrange it. I have great friends, however cannot say I like banks much. I went every day to collect it, every day they said ‘not here’. I was in a motel and counting my money again, thought I would have enough for four or more days, enough to buy a bus ticket for the two day journey down the length of the country. Plus a few tins of sardines, again, and some milk.
I threw a tantrum in the bank in the end and threatened a sit in. If the money was in the system why did they have to wait until it arrived before I could have it, I demanded, didn't they they trust their colleagues in Sydney?
In the end they gave it to me even though it hadn’t arrived, and they really should not have against Banking rules at the time.(There wasn’t Internet banking back then:) I caught that bus with little time to spare, bills all paid, and two roll up ciggies in my bag.
An elderly lady gave me an orange on the second day having noticed I had no food with me. She had nothing else to offer, they offered to buy me a meal at one of the stops but I said I was fine, I could manage. Should have taken them up on the offer. But hey two days and nights isn’t long a time. I knew my friend had left money for a taxi at the bus station and a t-bone steak in her freezer for my return. Of course when I got back I had gone past hungry and fell asleep. The steak was good for breakfast.
Travelling around New Zealand I again ran short on funds and lived on cold meat sandwiches and fruit for days on end. Treating myself to some chips way down south to keep the cold away.
Not enough money
This were not the meagre rations of the above. Just the cheapest food I could find. I stopped in Dunedin to visit a friend and filled up there.
I had read many years previously that many survivors of starvation cannot eat the food that they existed on, after life returns to normal. Quite bizarre I thought, however, I found that sardines was off the menu for ten years. I knew I liked them but even after opening the tin I just couldn't bring myself to eat them and they weren’t even starvation rations.
My mind was convinced that if I ate sardines it proved yet again I had
No money and No food.
See yesterday’s post for mind over matter. The brain is a strange creature which controls us more than we know.
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