I've been making a concerted effort to bring my lunch into work for the last few months. It's partly an economy drive seeing that I have a very expensive education to pay for (I've been paying my college fees up front rather than having them come out of my taxes) and there are a few bills that need paying soon and I think my mattress is about to give up the ghost.
Also, as I have my most wonderful Tupperware pressure cooker, making lunch on a Sunday night for the week is both easy and fun. Yes, a microwave pressure cooker is a strange gadget to own, but it means I've got a curry ready in 30 minutes on a Sunday - you can't complain about that.
Anyway, today, on the expectation that I was having lunch with a friend, I came to work lunchless. Then the message came through that my mate had a meeting over lunchtime, so I was double stuck. Rather than going to Nandos - was was left to fend for myself.
Workmates will tell you that I'm not good when I don't have my lunch ready to go. This means there are decisions to make and you see, lunch is a big decision. I ask a lot of people what I should have for lunch, only to think about it and say, "Nah." Then give a reason as to why. "Sushi makes me poo like a rabbit." "Cauliflower makes me fart." "Can't be bothered walking to anywhere decent." These are all reason why I don't want the suggested food.
So today, lunchless, I look at my options.
I could go to Nandos and join the queue. Nando's in my happy place. However, I like going to Nandos with friends. My normal chicken wrap and chips doesn't taste the same when you're on your own. Also, on Fridays there's queue at the one nearest work and I know I'm having takeaway tonight as a friend is coming over to watch a movie.
There is the virtuous hippy shop across the way. All kale, quinoa, nut mylks and gluten-free / diary-free / taste free fare. I don't mind going there occasionally, however they are normally exorbitantly priced and you want to scream at the girl behind the counter to go eat a burger and get some iron in their diet. They sometimes also try to get you to join their ashram and learn yoga. Not today, I think.
There is the Japanese place. Sushi - yum. Just not in the mood today. There is food in the bain marie there - Japanese pancakes, yakitori, gyoza and an array of food that can be served up with rice. Each time I've had something out of the bain marie I've ended up getting the sweats from the overuse of MSG. Think I'll give that a miss.
My current work husband, Padraig, sometimes takes me to the noodle place down the way. Problem with this is that it's far inferior to the noodle place down Centre Lane in town, where I can walk in and they say "Flat rice, chicken, hot chilli, yes?" Awesome place. Awesome noodles. This place, not so good. Too greasy, can't make your own and a stupidly long wait for food. You also have to load the noodles up with chili sauce to make them palatable.
I could venture over to the outlet shopping centre for either a schnitzel roll or a salmonella salad at one of the cafes in there. Too much to do. Don't feel like the walk.
There is the Malaysian place across the way - not up for that as I've finally got my blood pressure in check and Malaysian and I don't get on, as much as I do love it. Something about the galangal and the fact that it's full of oil. Still nice, but no.
There is a burger joint downstairs which do fantastic burgers - but I didn't feel like having to wash my arms after lunch today.
Which mean I ended up at the hipster joint. Not to be confused with the virtuous hippy joint, the hipster joint does pretty good coffee and decent food. Okay, you have to occasionally pick samples of bush ranger beard out of your salad made of whatever hipster food is going at the time - normally something to do with chick peas and roasted cauliflower. The coffee they serve is pretty good as a back up - thankfully it's not deconstructed yet (I've noticed they also do a matcha latte - must try that one day) They do a decent toasted Reuben Sandwich too - no to New York standards, but the sauerkraut is crunchy and the pastrami fresh.
Today, I forewent the Reuben and had a ham, brie, dijon and onion marmalade baguette. It was nice. I think of my bowels backing up from the stodge tomorrow, but it was fine. Quite nice actually.
But I think I prefer bringing in my lunch from home. It may be a bit boring, but at least I don't have to make a decision.