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Home » Eat Local challenge

Green team – keep’n it local to the end (sort of) in Fiji

Submitted by on April 21, 2015 – 6:00 am

By Jizzy Green, Katikati, Bay of Plenty

Kiwis eating food grown and produced within a 200 km radius for 30 days of April in the Happyzine Eat Local Challenge.

Note: Jizzy and her partner Mike will be eating local in Fiji for half of the challenge, and are intending to live off local food there too, reporting back on their experiences if they can access internet.

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Day 16

Locavore:  “a person whose diet consists only or principally of locally grown or produced food.

Okay, this day is definitely not one of our proudest Locavore days!  We had of course, our last Fiji hotel fruitarian breakfasts – totally locally grown.  Pineapple, watermelon, guava, papaya and coconut.  Then we had a mid-morning snack of locally produced (Suva) yoghurt and local honey – the pleasures of simple foods!  My friend Sue came to spend the last couple of hours with us, we yakked and threw around ideas to create sale-able hand-crafted arty goods to sell and make millions from!  (A girl can dream, can’t she?)

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We drank endless cups of Fijian coffee brew (not grown there but processed in Suva) and then all too soon it was time to catch the shuttle to the airport.  We snacked on my own home-dried apples, rice crackers with Fijian cheese, local bananas and the last of our coconut.  While waiting in the airport, a beautiful blonde girl sat next to me and we struck up a conversation.  She was 23yrs old, originally from the Ukraine, and had managed to get a 3 month student visa for the United States, and then managed to secure a refugee “green card” and now works in Vegas while finishing her studies to be a dress designer.  She told us how hard life is in Ukraine, and how her parents are still living there, and she is sending money home to help them repair their home.  She was so likeable and I wanted to take care of her but she seemed to be quite capable.  She told me how hungry she was, so we offered up the last of our NZ-made cheddar biscuits, which she hungrily devoured.  I was sorry I was not able to find her at the Auckland airport to offer further assistance.  I told Mike I would like to think someone would do the same for my children when they travel.

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Onboard the flight, we were given a vegetarian meal which consisted of pasta and veggies in a béchamel sauce – totally not Local or even our grain of choice, but we were not in control!  When in the air, eat what is on offer!

Upon arrival, we were collected by Ramesh, the Indian owner of the motel we use when travelling.  We leave our car at the motel, Ramesh drops us off and collects us again from the airport for no extra charge, as long as we spend one night.  We had brought him a big bag of feijoas and limes when we arrived there from Katikati, so  he insisted on taking us to the local Indian restaurant and buying us a meal.  We told him we had already eaten, so he insisted on not only taking us, but in buying us Masala chai and halwa!  So we had halwa (semolina – wheat based).  A thousand floggings for our transgressions – many air-miles but then we have just ourselves flown many, many miles too!!

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Challenges:

When travelling, it is Ultra-difficult to be in control of what you eat.

It is also Uber-difficult to refuse the offerings of kindness in complicated explanations of The Challenge – so my motto is:  Go with the Flow.  Like the apt license plate below:

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Kia Ora!  Eat Local Day 17

Wake Up at 4.30am in Auckland motel, as we had to leave at 5am to make it to my First Aid Course at 8am in Tauranga.  No time for breakfast – coffee and we hit the road.  Arrived home in Katikati for a quick 20minute break to refresh, make a cuppa tea and hit the road again to read my course at 8am (10 minutes late but good going!)  By mid-morning, my stomach is consuming itself and I devour 4 feijoas I brought from our garden.  Eyed out the bowl of mixed nuts but thought I would have to Stay in the 200km Zone!!

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By lunch time, I eyed the lunch provided and realised I would never make the end of the day if I stayed in the 200km Eat Local Zone – beside non-vegetarian fare, there was little choice and having had no time to prepare anything, I had no choice but to eat 2 small slices of baguette with mushrooms and cheese – and some more feijoas.  A cuppa tea and then my tummy started in on grumbling miserably, so by the time I got home just after 3pm, I was hanging out for ANYTHING to eat!  A carrot had to suffice, while making the evening meal.

Dinner consisted of everything within our zone – a veg curry with home-grown or locally grown fare, rice and a dessert of feijoa with rice flour baked topping.  It felt sooo good to be back in control of what we can eat, within the comfort of my own kitchen and all it’s appliances and sharp knives!!!

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Challenges:

Being on the road and losing control of what you eat, and when and how.

Sometimes being “fussy eaters” means going hungry!

Highs:

Being back in my own kitchen and having access to so much locally grown food!  Knowing what is local and what is not.  Bring on tomorrow!

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