Vegan Vacation: How to pretend you’re being good

photo2After taking on a new job, I front-loaded my summer with travel, so I haven’t had a lot of time for things I enjoy (writing this blog, seeing my friends, mowing the lawn) or things I don’t enjoy (going to the dump, cleaning the bathrooms, mowing the lawn). Our house is seriously starting to resemble Grey Gardens. Now that I think of it, I do enjoy wearing a scarf on my head. And I occasionally slip into my Massachusetts accent. Oh dear.

I am very proud to report, however, that I have been making time to get on my elliptical every morning for 45 minutes to an hour. I’m not losing any weight–let’s face it, I look pregnant–but at my last doctor’s visit, my blood pressure was good and my cholesterol numbers, albeit not lovely, were within a range that rendered me just another ho-hum patient rather than the sweaty breathless Chicago fan I was a year ago.

As for my vegan diet? I was in Nantucket last week and ordered a tofu scramble. When the waiter announced the restaurant had no tofu, I switched it to eggs. In other words, I continue to follow the path where I will be vegan when I can, and will be vegetarian when I can’t, and will be an omnivore when I know for certain it will be delicious. I’m a complete hypocrite.

Here is a list of things I shouldn’t have eaten while on vacation in Nantucket:

  • Downyflake Doughnut: What started as “Hee hee, I should at least have a bite,” quickly became “Lay off me I’m starving.”
  • Chicken tacos: My sister-in-law marinated the chicken forever. I didn’t want to be rude. So I had a second helping.
  • Scallops cooked in butter: I had only two, but I couldn’t resist.
  • Pork tenderloin: My father-in-law has been talking for weeks about this pork tenderloin with lime that he saw in Cook’s Illustrated. I had to have some.
  • A basket of fries and warm pretzels with cheese fondue at super touristy Brotherhood of Thieves: It was a rainy afternoon and Groom and I sneaked off for a beer after visiting the Nantucket Whaling Museum. It felt right. I don’t regret that moment. (My favorite quote from the week. Me: I really want to go to the Whaling Museum while we’re here. Father-in-Law: It’s not supposed to rain.*)photo
  • Cioppino: I have to assume this was fatty because it was so good and I probably shouldn’t have eaten a large bowl of it with two slices of delicious bread, but I did. Groom harvested the clams with his nephew. What kind of an asshole turns down that meal?

Now here is a list of things I wanted to eat while on vacation in Nantucket but didn’t:

  • Ice cream sundaes. Every day. Every. Dagnabit. Day. When I got back to Maine, I had to force myself to do other things to keep my mind off the fact that there is a Dairy Witch within 10 miles of my house. But, I never gave in.
  • Flank steak with homemade chimichurri using parsley from my mother-in-law’s garden: There were enough yummy sides that I could pretend I ate it, but I resisted. The sauce on a small piece of bread was heavenly though.
  • Suckling pig confit from American Seasons: This was pig confit wrapped in pork belly and served with cracklins. Well, not really, but that’s how I viewed it when it arrived at the table. It looked delicious. I had rice cakes instead. And I did not order a chocolate espresso martini with dessert.

I’m writing this from Seattle, about to get on a cruise with my family. A cruise for which I purchased a bracelet that allows me to drink as much alcohol as I want and  where food is available 24 hours a day. And, so I begin again.

  • What I wanted for breakfast:
    A delicious chocolate croissant and tortillas with eggs, green salsa, and cheese.
  • What I had for breakfast:
    A banana, yogurt with honey, blueberries, and strawberries, and a couple slices of rye toast.

But the yogurt was so full of fat I thought it was whipped cream at first and I definitely put a little butter on that toast. This is going to be a long, fun, fatty disgusting week.


*My actual favorite quote of the week is this:
Father-in-Law gazing out at the moors on Nantucket, out toward Madaket said, “Can’t you just imagine Andrew Wyeth walking along those fields with his easel to capture that landscape?”
Me: “I didn’t know Andrew Wyeth spent time here.”
Father-in-Law: “He didn’t.”

Sarah Devlin

About Sarah Devlin

Sarah Devlin has been writing about the recreational industry since the late ’90s but ironically can’t run, swim, or bike a mile.