Those single pack meals are getting better.
I have found a line of Ainsley Harriott meals and soups which are pretty good. The wild mushroom or Moroccan couscous and risottos are quite palatable. There are a number of really good retort packs of Indian and other Asian cuisines which are superb. Aloo mutter, paneer paratha, palakh paneer, byriani , dahls, all ready to heat and eat and all as good as or better than I can do myself. Usually better. And already portioned out! Not quite enough in a serving though – which is of course exactly the right amount to be eating.
So I have a healthy breakfast nowadays, graze on dried fruit and nuts with light lunches and evening meals. I have a slightly more self indulgent meal once or twice a week but even so I still need to exercise more. A walk is just not enough. The arthritis is doing better than I am. I am not very fit these days The man who once swam around Mayor Island (with flippers), won the Hawkes Bay underwater club underwater orienteering championship in 1978 and who could schnorkel to 20 metres depth, stay down nearly two minutes and come up with a cray in each hand, one tucked in an armpit, and another held tightly between bleeding thighs – can now barely climb up a muddy slippery stream bank.
Still getting the crays though, except now they are giglies, koonacs or marron , which, incidentally, look as if they might make interesting pets…
I have an aquarium that someone gave me. I was thinking of putting skinks in it, but maybe some Gambusia and marron may be interesting… all that can wait until I return from my month away. Everything is focussed on that trip right now. The bikes’ transport to Sydney is booked and paid for, our flights to Sydney are booked and paid for, We are travelling between school holidays so accommodation along the route should be no problem. My leave is booked and approved. I get 5 weeks annual leave a year (four with leave loading, one without) and 12 RDOs – rostered days off. That is a massive 37 days off a year! I only need 15 of them for this trip.
Leave Loading. That is another great thing about this country. At some stage some clever, and no doubt influential union convinced the powers-that-be that holidays are so important for the mental health of workers, and so much more expensive than just going to work every day, that Australians should be paid MORE when on leave.
As a result, when I take annual leave (but not RDOs) for four of the weeks I am paid 17% more than usual!
Gotta love Australia!