Last week, while writing my report, I was already starting to feel the lingering effects of the brown recluse poison. It’s nasty stuff. Sweats and shaking, loss of appetite, and that’s before mentioning the pus, blood, and poison oozing out of the wounds. Gross, I know. Welcome to my world.
Anyway, it lingered, and Sunday was not a good day.
Sharon came up to show me some mercy, bringing with her a care package. She coaxed me into eating a delicious salad and left some supplies, which I gratefully added to my kitchen stocks. The boon consisted of:
- Part of a package of pepperoni (salad ingredient)
- Part of a package of bacon bits (again, salad ingredients)
- Big bag of shredded cheese!
- A four-pack of chocolate protien shakes (gifted because she’s got major concerns about my diet) – since these are milk-based, will probably toss them into my iced coffee pitcher at some point
- A small container of Thousand Island dressing
- And….chicken casserole.
This one’s slightly different than my previous care package, with Ritz crackers and poppy seeds atop it. Even though I’m reaching my fill line where chicken casserole is concerned, I have to say I’m looking forward to giving it a go. That will probably find its way onto the menu tomorrow, assuming my appetite returns.
Breakfast: More pop tarts (continuing to hit those hard) (400 calories)
Dinner: Salad (I’m going to estimate this at 700 calories, but that’s probably a tad high).
Only drank about half my usual amount of coffee, so only 150 calories from that.
Total for the day: 1250
Not really feeling much better. Spent most of the day in bed but did manage to get up long enough to do some writing.
Skipped breakfast, picked at the last of the salad (about 400 calories), and again, am down to about half speed on coffee consumption (another 150 calories there).
Forced myself to eat a pair of hot pockets (480 calories) for dinner, but barely tasted it. Hopefully I’ll shake it off by tomorrow. Bleh.
Total for the day: 1030
Back in the proverbial saddle. I can still feel the poison in my veins (and in two of the three bites), but at least I’m feeling human again.
Out of a sense of morbid curiosity, I ventured into town briefly and was shocked by the conditions there. The store shelves are frighteningly bare (OOC: This was actually caused by the hurricane threatening the eastern seaboard, but the presence of those bare shelves certainly underscored the premise of this experiment, and I have to say, made me suddenly take it a lot more seriously).
I didn’t linger.
There was a frantic energy in the air….not quite violence, but you could tell that it wouldn’t take much to push it over that line. People were scared.
Scout complete, I returned to the mountaintop, but the sights and sounds from town stayed with me long after I had returned.
I spent most of the rest of the afternoon reorganizing my kitchen stock, which is separate from my pantry stock.
I should probably say a bit about that. I’ve got my food stores broken into two sections: Kitchen stuff and pantry stuff.
Kitchen stuff is the “current food supply.” Stuff kept on various kitchen shelves and in the fridge that I’m currently eating from.
Pantry stuff is kept in shelves in my bedroom and bathroom. It’s a three-room farmhouse, and I didn’t want to have to go out to the root cellar to get stuff, so I’ve kept it all indoors with me. It’s a little cramped, but the cats don’t seem to mind.
Anyway, after seeing all the bare shelves in town, I decided I’d better start getting organized. It’s going to be a while before food is a commodity again, so I need to take stock and start monitoring more closely.
The good news is, I’ve got way more “stuff” in the kitchen than I first thought. Found a slightly stale partial box of store brand Apple Jacks and figured that would take the place of pop tarts for breakfast for at least a couple days.
Found a carton of ten eggs WAAAY in the back of the fridge. No idea how long they’ve been in there, but they passed the sniff test, so I moved them front and center. Will start with those things and find creative uses for the salad stuff (including the bag of shredded cheese!) Sharon brought with her to make salad.
Also found a small bag of brown sugar. It was hard as a brick, but I worked it over with the rubber mallet and got it to cooperate. Relocated it into a plastic bin with a good seal. No idea what I’ll use it for, but…waste not. I’ll think of something, and since I’m dreadfully short on sweet treats, I’m sure it’ll come in handy down the road.
Nothing for breakfast. New chicken casserole for lunch (900 calories), and two more hot pockets for dinner (480 calories). Back to regular coffee consumption (300 calories).
Total for the day: 1680 calories.
Breakfast: 4 eggs and some chopped up bell pepper (salad remnant) (370 calories, according to Google)
The eggs were mostly frozen, having been jammed at the back of the fridge for God only knows how long, but they did indeed pass the sniff test, so I duly scrambled the hell out of them. Still have six left. They were a bit…chewy, but what the hell. I’m not picky.
Lunch: 2 more hot pockets (hitting those pretty hard – supply won’t last too much longer at this rate) (480)
Dinner: wasn’t hungry. Made myself eat a packet of pop tarts anyway (400 calories)
Coffee: 300 calories
Total for the day: 1550 calories
YAY! The fruits of my standing trade deal (power saw and pallet busting for 2gal of milk, six eggs, and a venison steak) have arrived, along with two pallets for me to bust.
Mike and I solidified that the deal is for dismantling two pallets a month, so that’s a question mark removed from the equation.
After breakfast and the morning writing session, I stepped out to the root cellar armed with my trusty rubber mallet, grabbed the pallet buster and got to work. Two pallets well and duly demolished, and then, back to the writing.
The addition of the six eggs from Mike brings me back up to an even dozen on hand. I moved the older ones to the left, and will use them first, hoarding my precious fresh ones.
Breakfast and Lunch: Polished off the stale, generic apple jacks (210 calories each time)
Dinner was…yeah, more hot pockets (480 calories)
Coffee: 300 calories
Total for the day: 1200 calories
The big news of the day arrived in the form of an email from Valley Foods. My order has officially shipped! Not sure when it will be here, exactly, but after seeing all those bare shelves in town earlier in the week, the confirmation that it is on the way makes me feel a bit better about things.
Today I invented a new recipe: Apocalypse Pizza.
I got to looking at some of the ingredients in my kitchen stock and thought:
“Hey! Bread equals crust, right? Cheese equals…well, cheese, and pepperoni is a pizza topping. So if I make a grilled cheese sandwich, toss in a few slices of pepperoni, I’ve basically got a pizza…”
So I did.
Two slices of bread. A small amount of butter on each. Two slices of American cheese, with six slices of pepperoni between them.
Put them in the quesadilla maker to smoosh them flat and cook both sides at once, and voila! In just a few minutes, I had my very own Apocalypse pizza.
I had an even dozen slices of pep left from the salad stuff, so I had one for breakfast and one for lunch. Not bad.
Yeah, yeah, so it’s actually kind of pathetic, but hey – don’t judge me. I don’t wanna let anything go to waste, and I figured Apocalypse Pizza was as good a name as any for my creation, so there ya go.
Breakfast: Apocalypse Pizza (roughly 110 calories)
Lunch: Apocalypse Pizza (roughly 110 calories)
Dinner: PB&J (230 calories)
Snack: pop tarts, of course! (400 calories)
Coffee: 300 calories
Total for the day: 1150 calories
Breakfast: 4 eggs and the last of that bell pepper (370 calories) (kitchen stocks down to 8 – 2 more frozen/thawed, and six fresh)
Lunch: 2 hot pockets (480 calories)
Dinner: Okay, I broke down – that venison just looks too good. Venison steak with a can of green beans (200 for the steak, and for the 70 for green beans). LOTS of sodium in the green beans, so I tossed them into my colandar and gave them a good rinse to get rid of most of that. Still tasty, and better for my heart. Good deal.
Also, I did NOT cut it in half as I had intended. I just greedily scarfed down the whole thing. Diet’s been a bit spotty this week and calorie counts were generally on the low side, so I splurged. Can’t do that too often, because I only have a limited supply of meat, but I’m hoping I’ll be able to find other ways of augmenting that as the experiment grinds on.
Total for the day: 1420
It was unseasonably cold today. Storm front moving in. Must be a pretty big one because the road was lined with birds – at least a couple hundred of them—seeking refuge and unsuspecting worms. They were on edge, too. Bella went out and tried her luck hunting them but couldn’t get the drop on any of them. She came back and contented herself with some dry kibble.
It’s been raining off and on today, but not hard. Some stray gusts of surprisingly strong wind, but nothing the mountain can’t handle. Phone hasn’t gone off to alert me of flooding in town, so for the time being at least, all quiet.
Synopsis: A strangely disquieting week. The sight of those empty shelves made me sit up and take notice. Suddenly, this feels real, and there’s a certain sense of urgency now, where there wasn’t any before.
Was VERY glad to have gotten that email confirming that the freeze-dried stuff is on its way. Next week’s report should feature pictures of the new arrivals as I struggle to make room for it all on the shelving I’ve got available.
For the time being though, the kitchen supplies are holding up nicely, I invented a (relatively) tasty new dish, and I haven’t even touched my impressive array of cheap ass TV dinners (though I am down to my last four hot pockets – boo!).
The green beans I had with the venison marked the first official withdrawal from the pantry stocks, minus the pop tarts I’ve been tearing through, and this evening (Saturday evening) I broke in a second time and got a new tin of coffee (13 remaining in inventory) and a bag of sugar (36 pounds remaining in inventory).
Sometime next week, the rubber should really hit the road, and when the freeze-dried stuff arrives, I’ll start experimenting with it, adding it to the regular diet, while continuing to mostly eat from the kitchen stocks.
BP: 188/79 (high – I blame spider venom)
Standing Trade Deals:
Just the one: Rip apart two pallets and lend Mike my table saw as needed in exchange for 2 gals of milk a month, 6 eggs and a venison steak. Took delivery of the eggs, steak, and one of the two gallons of milk this week, further bolstering my stores.
PS: The picture gracing the top of this post is of part of my “kit.” The stuff I take with me when tromping around in the wilds up here.
Until next time…