Vacation is synonymous with joy to me. I love being free of the stress of every day life and I love traveling. This week I am tagging along while my husband attends a conference in Los Angeles, because I am too selfish to let him get that close to the ocean without me.
Yesterday while he worked I strolled up and down Venice Beach, in and around it’s canal walks, and back to our hotel in Marina del Rey.
It was a warm day with a cool breeze and I took lots of photos. The path along the canals is gorgeous, with its variety of architecture styles and its multitude of flowers, bushes and succulents. It was a rush of saturated color, contrasting textures and intoxicating aromas from the blooms.
I honestly can’t imagine being unhappy if this was my view every day, but I know that’s a crock of shit because even if you live in paradise, you have stress. Hell, it maybe even more stressful because the rent’s so damn high.
Still, it’s fun to imagine waking up to this beauty every day and I certainly hope the folks who live in these homes have allotted enough time to enjoy it.
Vacation is normally synonymous with lots of indulgent food, but I have really tried to make better choices this time. I am winning the battle of good verses evil when it comes to food (mostly) but probably just holding my own on booze.
Pineapple martinis have made me their bitch.
Most people will tell you to avoid buffets if you are trying to lose weight — I suppose because it’s like leading a hog to a trough and asking him to go easy on the good stuff.
I genrally agree with that (not the hog part, that’s just a metaphor) especially if I am feeling vulnerable, which a lot of time I am. But this week I’ve been feeling pretty good, and the breakfast buffet here at the hotel is reasonably priced and loaded with good choices. Also, the flip side to the buffet argument is that I can control my portions much easier if I am the one doling it on my plate.
I learned something this week: French toast can taste good a) from a buffet line and b) without butter or syrup or whip cream, just topped with fresh strawberries.
No. Really. It’s true. The way I look at it, it’s a minimum amount of carbs and fat (the slices were not at all greasy) and a wee bit of protein from the eggs but with a lot fewer calories since I only had one slice and left off all the other extra sugar and fat and subbed in antioxidant rich, unprocessed fruit.
This morning I got a variety of melons and pineapple (hold the martini this time) and just a single spoonful of a huevos-ranchero-style scrambled eggs from the buffet. I was very satisfied, and got in a good stretch while patting myself on the back for my bacon restraint.
Yesterday while I was on my walkabout all over the shoreline, I chose the healthiest lunch I could from the menu of an adorable Mexican cafe: a soft chicken taco and a salad, with a minimum amount of cheese and lots of veggies. Sure, I had a Dos XX with it because I love beer at lunch while on vacation, but since I walked probably five miles yesterday and drank a gallon of water, I figured it was OK.
Last night I joined my husband and his accountant colleagues for dinner on the roof of our hotel. The food was OK — a small beef filet, a poached salmon filet, a pile of mushy mashed potatoes, two asparagus spears and two gangsta-tough baby carrots. I ate only half of my dinner (only a single bite of the potatoes) and only half of my dessert — a citrus flavored sponge cake with a cream filling and white chocolate shavings.
I may not be an accountant, but I know I saved half the calories by only eating half of the food. Math skillz, yo.
So yeah, it all comes down to choices. And I am trying, even while on vacation, to make better ones. I don’t really think I will lose weight on this vacation, but I at least hope to break even.