It’s 8:20 am, and I have been awake for a few hours. For the first night since we arrived, I finally slept for seven hours, feeling fantastic today. Tom should be here in the next hour since his flight took off a little early and is expected to land at 8:22 am. Since he has no luggage other than a small carry-on backpack, he should be able to grab an Uber in no time at all to make the 25-minute drive from the airport.
Although he’s been gone only a little over 24 hours, I missed him. Undoubtedly, he’ll be exhausted and may need to go to bed for a few hours. If he does, I’ll continue to work on today’s post and do the prep for tonight’s dinner. We’re having one of our favorite dinners: homemade “unwich,” breadless subway sandwiches with the quality, gluten-free meats we purchased at Costco and a crispy salad on the side.
With all the warnings on bagged lettuce and spinach, I hesitated to purchase romaine for the sandwiches. In the past week or so, I watched a documentary on Netflix called “Poisoned,” which is terrifying about getting sick from everyday groceries in US grocery stores. Since watching that movie, I have been washing and re-washing vegetables more than ever. Unfortunately, washing won’t remove much bacteria. Only cooking can do that, and I can’t imagine dunking lettuce in boiling water before eating.
When I turned on the news this morning, the first news story was about listeria found in bags of fresh spinach. Do we stop eating nutritious greens and salads altogether? I can’t imagine dinner without a salad on the side. Tom eats salad but doesn’t love it. But it’s a perfect side dish with many meals.
While we were in Ecuador, the only salad I made was coleslaw. It was easy to wash cabbage and peel and wash carrots. But I wasn’t confident about other salad greens not being exposed to tap water and bacteria. I wasn’t so concerned about pesticides there since I found insects on the produce we purchased from Raphael. In the US, finding an insect on a lettuce or cabbage leaf is a rarity, even if it’s labeled as organic.
When shopping at a market in the US, the produce almost looks too perfect to eat. It’s that appearing perfection that may result in toxic situations. None of us can be too careful. I strongly recommend watching “Poisoned” on Netflix. It opened my eyes to be more cautious than ever when preparing produce; even then, there’s no certainty.
Today, we’ve included more photos from our walk on the streets in The Village. One of the shops that we found most exciting was the “Seasons Grocery.” It’s a small market. but the ideal spot to stop in for a few items, such as wine, beer, spirits, produce, and a wide array of miscellaneous grocery items. They have a comprehensive deli with a seating area for eat-in breakfasts, coffees, and deli-type lunches.
To gain access to Seasons Grocery, we only need to walk down two flights of steps from the door down the corridor from our unit, and it’s right there, around the corner. This unique area reminds us of quaint shopping areas in Europe and other parts of the world we’ve visited over the past 11 years.
Tom is back! It was so good to see him. He had a good time seeing his family members at lunch. He enjoyed the party, returning to the airport shortly after 1:00 am. After dropping off the car, he found a spot to lie down and took a short nap. Security hadn’t opened yet, so he had to wait to check in for his flight.
His flight was full and uneventful. He arranged an Uber, and by 9:20, he was back in the building and on his way to our condo. It was great to see him. He’s not yet ready for a nap, but maybe later in the day. He’s chipper and in good spirits. Me, too.
We’ll be back with more new photos tomorrow. Have a fantastic day!
Photo from ten years ago today, December 20, 2013: