Saturday, June 28, 2008

Yes we have no bananas

Yes! We have no bananas. We have no bananas today! 

Originally, my local eating experiment included everything BUT fruit. Why? There are no bananas in Texas. Honestly, I've eaten a banana almost every day for the better part of my life and couldn't imagine a day going by without one of my favorite all time fruits. Lame? Perhaps. But after reading Barbara Kingslover's Animal, Vegetable, Miracle, I was inspired to give it a shot. So in March (5 months after the experiment began), I (with a little anxiety) expanded my local diet to include only local fruits as well.

So here I am three months later and I'm proud to be able to stand in front of you (well, sit in front of my computer, really) and say I haven't had a single banana. Not one. The truly miraculous thing is, as it turns out, I haven't died of malnutrition. How amazing is that? Cravings? I have to admit, I've thought about enjoying a nice banana from time to time, especially in those first two months where my fruit supplies were mostly grapefruit - seriously, you can only eat so much. But it is SO NOT a big deal. And I was actually nervous about going without a banana. I'm such a dork!

So tell me, What changes in your lives have you made (that you were nervous about at the time) that turned out to be no big deal?

15 comments:

Burbanmom said...

Composting! Thought it would be a lot of work, but really I just toss scraps in a bin and forget about them. Every now and again, when I feel like hiding from the kids, I go turn it.

No big whup.

blondeoverboard said...

we just recently gave up bananas in part because of a decision to eat more local food but also based on some of the things i've read about the way "employees" of the banana plantations are treated. it's not an industry i want to perpetuate. i did a little research and there are several varieties of banana that grow (and produce fruit) in texas so on a next trip to the local nursery i'm going to pick up a few plants. can i wait 5 years for a banana? probably. and besides the variety widely available in the grocery store (cavendish) don't compare to what you can find across the spectrum. when it comes to fruit, i like to take a cue from my filipino friends. their backyards are virtual garden's of eden. if they can grow bananas and oranges, figs, persimons, guava, papaya and mango well so can i!

Green Bean said...

We gave up bananas too. Then I lucked into some locally grown ones (I kid you not! even organic) at my town's farmers' market.

Okay, let see, what was hard . . . biking (I now love it!), hanging clothes out to dry (now so relaxing! though I did hate it for the first few months), giving up Target (haven't been in 8 months or longer and couldn't care less). I'm sure there is more but this is a good post. In living lighter, we sometimes give things but often we gain some thing else in return. In your case, maybe it was an appreciation of your local foodshed, a realization that you don't need bananas. In my case, I got firmer thighs, quiet time, more money in the bank account and less crap in my house.

arduous said...

I freaked out about no toilet paper for #1. But it turned out it was the easiest change ever....

rhonda jean said...

Hello, this is my first visit here. It's an interesting blog. :- )

I found it difficult to keep our garden going all year without having big gaps in production. It's much easier now.

We grow two types of bananas in our backyard, they're very easy to grow if you have a long hot summer. I hope you have space to grow some.

eco 'burban mom said...

Hmmmmm... I have to say that the thing I thought would be the hardest for me would be the idea of pre-packaged into indiviual portion anything. With so many kids it can be a challenge to refill SIGGs, portion out cookies, snacks etc. Though, now, it's just routine. I don't even notice anymore.

At first though, I acted like you had just stolen my dog or something... OMG, your bottle is empty AGAIN?? What, are these kids camels or something? Do they have some kind of disease?? Maybe they need to see a doctor. As it turns out, my kids are just thirsty and we were putting a god awful ton of plastic into the recycling bin each week.

Then, I started to feel better because I wasn't worrying about running out of bottled or packaged anything. If we needed more lemonade, I made it. If we needed more cookies, I made them. It was actually easier on the brain. Stockpile ingredients and you never really run out of much!! It's almost a relief really.

Heather @ SGF said...

burbanmom - the compost bin makes me a little nervous too. I mean, we have one. Kinda. We refer to it as "the hill." We keep adding scraps onto it, but we haven't turned anything in it since I moved in 3+ years ago. Oops. We need to redo it so I can get my garden going with good compost!

blondeoverboard - I just found out that a friend of a friend has some banana trees! I've told her that he can have as much money as he wants for them. I just wants some nanners! So far, there has been no fruit, though. Let me know how your trees do if you get one. Maybe we'll just do the same :)

green bean - I used to dread biking too but just love it now. I haven't done the clothes line in the backyard yet, but that's coming. With the heat we get down here, you would think clothes would dry lighting fast, but with the humidity, maybe not. Regardless, I'm looking forward to putting in a line. Since I'm home 4 days a week now it's much easier to do these things than when I was working at the office every day.

arduous - yep, that still freaks me out. Haven't tried it. Do you just rinse with water? I've always been curious how that works...

rhonda jean - welcome! We definitely have a long, hot summer here in Texas. I'm thinking you're right. We just need to grow our own. I do love bananas!

eco 'burban mom - Since I don't have kids, I can only imagine how much coordination goes into every single thing you do. I can see how it would be terrifying to move away from pre-packaged things, wondering where in the world you will find the time to make all this stuff from scratch. Honestly, those of you who have kids are such an inspiration. Even I have trouble finding the time to get things done, but you, you are the heros of the green movement. Not only are you doing the right thing, you're teaching the next generation. That's awesome!

blondeoverboard said...

heather,

lady finger is a banana that does well in our heat. they're sweet and delicious and 100X more flavorful than the cavendish. manzanos are also yummy although not as sweet. the fruit leaves behind and aftertaste thats reminicent of apples hence the name... apple bananas.
when we gave up the a/c for the summer, the first week was a sweaty nightmare. we almost gave up but, people being what they are and as adaptable as they are.. we managed. the kids spend more time outside playing and less time parked in front of the idiotbox and we've discovered it can be alot of fun to make our own lemonade and ice cream to help battle the heat.

Beany said...

Expanding my palate was a biggie. I really don't like to experiment with food. For years I would eat the same thing every single day with little variation. After I began eating local fruits and veggies I got exposed to so many newbies that I didn't feel deprived or even thought that I was missing anything.

Going without showering is another as well as washing clothes in cold water. I thought both had to be done and was very religious about it. But since I don't roll around in the dirt nor sweat on most days (thanks to AC everywhere) it seemed silly to shower and change clothes frequently.

Beany said...

meant HOT water not cold.

Jennifer (of Veg*n Cooking) said...

That would probably have to be giving up the car. We had a fairly junky car that kept threatening to break down, when it was on the fritz again, we decided to check out the bus line and see how well we could do between that and walking. I thought we'd last for a week, but once we got the hang of it down, we really saw the perks of it!

Jennifer (of Veg*n Cooking) said...

I forgot to mention that this was three years ago, we later donated the car to a neighbor who fixed it up and now drives it. :-)

Heather @ SGF said...

bloneoverboard - thanks for the tips on bananas. We've been looking into putting in some fruit trees and that might just fit the bill!

beany - I'm a dull eater too. When I was going through my divorce (geez, 10 years ago), I lived at a hotel that had a Subway near by. They happened to serve breakfast at that one and for 2 weeks, I ate there for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. It was just too easy. Nowadays, my meals are still pretty monotonous - toast, sandwiches, and soup day after day. I shake things up every once in a while though and try something new - like chard, spaghetti squash, and collard greens - just cause that's what was available at the farmers market. Eating locally has definitely broadened some horizons - and really, doesn't the food just taste better?

jennifer - I think it's cool that you donated you car to someone who needed it. What an incredibly generous thing to do!

Melissa said...

I'm going to vote with beany here and say hands down the biggest thing that I thought I'd miss but didn't was the showering every day (mostly washing my hair). I've gone from every day washes to 2 or maybe 3 times a week (depends on social calendar). My hair was really disgusting looking for about two weeks, but now it's so great & looks much healthier, and I'm using less water and wasting a lot less time messing with how I look, which doesn't really interest me in the first place anyway :)

Heather @ SGF said...

Geez, guys. I'm so jealous about the not having to shower every day. I would love that. I could probably manage it if I didn't exercise every day, but if I don't get my 45 min plus of biking or walking in, I'm SO not fun to be around. I get too restless. And then, of course, I'm so gross that a shower is a plus if I want to be within a mile of another human being (don't think the dog would mind so much - she's pretty stinky herself - but I certainly wouldn't keep my hubby for long and I'm feeling pretty attached to him, you know.

I'm pretty low maintenance on my looks too. I generally only wear "makeup" on days I go to work and then it's only mascara on the top lashes and I'll admit, I draw my eyebrows on (my eyebrows are light blonde and you can't really see them. I think this makes me look like a freak so the brow pencil comes out from time to time). I don't do perfume and I'm notorious for wandering around in t-shirts that I get free from local businesses. I'm such a bum (thankfully, my hubby is from CA and loves the beach bum look!)