I have the best of intentions.
I know exactly what has to happen.
I know the rules.
Plan. List. Eat.
Make a plan. Make the list. Eat before I go.
But every other Wednesday, somewhere around 5:00 in the evening, I find myself walking aimlessly through Albertson's, pushing a shopping cart, starving. And compulsively buying everything that looks delicious. And after a day in the field, believe me. Everything looks delicious.
I really did make a list. See? I only needed these four things to tide me over until Sunday. Or next Wednesday. Or, if I had been thinking about it, not until a week from Sunday since I will be out of town pretty much all of next week.
It all started out okay. I walked past the Starbucks where the Peppermint Mochas were calling my name..."Ashley! Ashley! We miss you! Drink us! We are soooo gooood for you!" I was a woman on a mission. I went right to the produce aisle for the salad. Number Four on the List of Essential Items.
I got a little sidetracked by the fruit. Got some apples. Bananas. Chili mangos and papaya. You know, for the field. It's all good for me. Impulsive, yes. But healthy impulsive decisions are allowed.
Next I went down the pasta aisle. Partly because its the aisle immediately next to the produce aisle. Partly just to look. Make sure I wasn't forgetting something on my List of Essential Items. And maybe to see if there were any delicious sauces on sale. And surprise! There were...so I bought some. And some olives. And pepperoncinis. To go on my salad. Or maybe on a flatbread pizza that I might have for dinner. Or maybe to add to some really great spaghetti that I might also have for dinner. Not on the list, but these things don't spoil and that's okay.
Onward to the dairy aisle. For the milk I need for my Saturday morning cereal and soy milk for my coffee that I have every day. And sour cream. Because I might have some burritos one of these days. And burritos are really good with sour cream. Maybe I'll have that for dinner.
But wait! I am almost out of coffee. Pointless to buy soy milk if you are out of coffee. So I went back to the coffee aisle. And saw this new flavor of Sleepytime tea which I really like to drink in bed while I read at night. Mmmm. Maybe that's what I'll have for dinner. Tea and reading. But wait! Maybe I should consider cutting back on my 4 shots of espresso every morning and have tea instead. Like this chai green tea. So I got it too. If I don't really cut back on my coffee, I can at least put it in my desk. Or maybe take it camping.
By this time, it is pushing 5:30. My stomach has started to eat itself now. And look! My favorite flavor of Triscuit is on sale. And they would be deeeelightful for a snack when I get home with this hummus. Which is also on sale! So I bought two. Not on the list, true. Perhaps a little excessive - there is only one of me after all, but I swear I will eat this hummus on my wraps that I take in the field. Hummus, olives, pepperoncinis, salad....all on a tortilla - which I have at home already. Smart shopping! Go, Ashley!
Speaking of that, I am getting a little low on field food, I think to myself. I better get some granola bars. And hey! Look! This Albertson's carries my two favorite flavors of Kashi granola bars! Better get them both since I won't be coming back to the store for at least 3 more days. I might run out by then. Granted...two boxes equals 12 bars...not that I can imagine a situation where I am really hungry in the field and I might have to have 4 granola bars a day for the next 3 days. But I would rather be safe than sorry. Err on the side of caution, you know?
At this point. All hell broke loose.
I don't really know what happened. I became a different woman. Obsessed with the collection of Snacks! Like Pirates' Booty! And different kinds of chocolate chips. AND CEREAL! That was on the list!!! And OH MY GOD! THE GIANT BOXES OF CEREAL ARE ON SALE! And so is the frozen yogurt I really, really love! Which, let's face it, I am probably going to eat for dinner since it almost 6 PM now. But wait! What is that? Is that a delicious looking bottle of wine? And another? And a case of beer? I don't need these things. Its not like I am going to a party or having friends over or celebrating Wednesday. But I might need a beverage, besides tea, to wash down my frozen-yogurt-triscuit-hummus-spaghetti-salad-pizza-burrito that I am going to make when I get home.
As I surveyed my items on the conveyor belt, I couldn't help but wonder - am I a 29 year old singleton...or an alcoholic 6 year old with a check book?