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I’m back from ‘barbershop school’. It was amazing. Three packed days of classes and singing and contests and entertainment. It was held on a college campus, so the food was all served cafeteria style. Since we were in the Deep South, there were plenty of avoid foods available. I did my best to make reasonable choices. Grits were served every morning. Oh, how I wanted a serving of those lovely grits! I managed to stay away from them, and was able to avoid all the corn products that were obvious. For breakfasts, I always had eggs, and a small portion of bacon. I cannot resist a crispy piece of bacon when it is staring me in the face. There was always fresh grapefruit, apples and bananas available in the mornings, too. Do you want to know what other kinds of food they served??? Well, there were biscuits, and french toast, and pancakes and muffins galore. The usual cold cereals, milk, bagels, peanut butter, jam…and well, you know. Lot’s of things I (we) used to eat.
My body had a hard time getting used to the time change. So, after forcing down breakfast at what my body thought was 4:00am, I was not hungry for lunch a few hours after that. So, I would skip the lunches and have a Unibar around 3:00pm, which was noon to my stomach. By dinner time I was hungry. They had enough choices that I never had to ‘choose’ chicken. Unfortunately there was a lot of starch served to fill in the gaps of small protein portions. So, I had some noodles here and a slice of bread there. There was plain rice one evening, which made me happy. There was always an ample salad bar available, but there were no compliant dressings, so I chose the ranch. And the DESSERTS!! There were tables of desserts. Cakes, cookies, apple crisp, krispy treats and a soft serve ice cream machine. I was able to avoid them all till the last evening when I poured myself a bowl of the ice cream. Whew! I almost made it though!
A consequence of these food choices resulted in some, what you might call, ‘gut reactions’. I did suffer for an hour or two every morning. I was lucky the classes were only about an hour long apiece. The change in weather could have affected things, too. The humidity was very high and it was very hot. I am not used to going from air conditioning to hot, humid air so many times in one day. By the end of the week, my ankles were very thick from the swelling. They don’t swell in the Northwest where I live now. But I do remember when I was growing up on the East coast, my ankles would always swell in the summertime. Even when I was as young as twelve.
But, despite the few inconveniences, it was a most valuable experience. I’m already planning next year's trip.
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