Still full of a cold, literally pints of liquid still oozing from my nose and with tissues hardly being affordable it’s still pissing me off. There have been times I’ve had to walk into town from my home with the only intention being to fill a bag with tissues from public toilets to take home to address my nose issues as well as my toilet issues. This is the only solution I have found to the problem of not affording tissues and toilet rolls. Apart from that, and still being cold I’m not as lethargic or miserable as I was when I last blogged on the subject of being on benefits, which is here.
So what’s changed, well the sun is shining which it wasn’t the other day which always makes me feel better especially as it’s currently shining on me though the window as I write this, anyhow I’ve had a few decent meals now, look at this for one, actually this is the same meal I’ve had every day for 4 days now and I’m still happy to know I’ll be eating this today and tomorrow. Until all the price reduced ingredients are gone.
After a shitty diet of cheap cup of soups I had really been craving vegetables, especially this time of year there’s something primal about eating what’s in season and autumn I really feel a desire to eat root vegetables and pomegranates, perhaps because I associate those foods with the seasons as a child, that’s kind of how it was back then in the 70’s. My mom would buy veg from a local farmer who once a week would come down our street with his van and sell his veg to residents. It was Mr Moorcroft, we’d lived across the road from him some years earlier before my parents separated. We’d lived in a big house in the country, I had 5 sisters and two brothers, my dad was a successful business man and agricultural engineer, but now my mom, two sister and me we were living in a council house in the village after spending two years in 6 different houses of neighbors, family and friends and anybody who’d put us up for a week or two. I was two years old when she (mom) walked out on him (dad) one day due to violence, alcoholism and such, I only know what I’ve overheard, like I said I was just two years old, I was 4 years old when we got moved into a council flat, then later a council house..
Anyway I love vegetables, I was very lucky to get what was left on the reduced shelf in a local store before closing, which was a bag of baby potatoes reduced from £1.99 to just 39p, a bag of organic carrots also reduced from £1.89 to 29p, some kale, a huge 150g bag reduced (in the picture) to 19p and a punnet of organic chestnut mushrooms reduced to 24p from £1.56. HAPPY DAYS INDEED!!
This is really my kind of food so I thew it into an old plastic microwave steamer (which is probably one of my greatest ever purchases, cheap of course but I’ve had so much use out of it, put your veg in the basket (pic 2) pour on a bit of boiling water and microwave 5 minutes) then I found a bit of Bisto in the cupboard but the BBE date was a year ago, I looked through the granuals to make sure there were no weevels or anything else undesirable in but it looked fine so I had gravy too 🙂 rock n roll! Really, really nice meal after a month of the same old shit of dried food like cup of soups.. What I bought at such a low price has provided quality meals for me for 5 days for literally pence at a time 😀 happy happy days.
The only thing is though, living like this you don’t get a choice of what you eat, you pick up whatever you can that is reduced and you make the most of it, grateful, like magic, the universe has provided for you and you feel safe in that knowledge and happy. It is actual work because you have to go out at a certain time in the evening when the store reduced the items and you may look a fool leaving with nothing, but when you’ve got £1 money, no food an another week until you get access to money that £1 has to go a looooong way! This means going to the shop at 6pm or 7pm depending or even later to get a good bargain and then you’re left with what nobody else wants, often. And often you might go and there is nothing at all left. You’ve got ready to go out in public, make yourself half decent to appear ‘normal’ by removing bubblewrap you’ve wrapped around you for warmth and put a bit of lipstick on or whatever and walking some distance. But still, ever grateful for food you can pick up, often at 1/5 of the original price. So it all seems worth it.
It is comparable to foraging actually, that’s what it feels like, it actually feels quite primal in that you’re going out to hunt for food, you can’t just browse and pick up what you want, you don’t even see what’s on the shelves, there’s no point looking it’s not for you. It might as well not be there so you don’t even see it. But what you do see is reduced stickers, you have developed an eye for them and you have become knowledgeable in the store practices and the times they reduce items, you’ve stalked your prey! haha and like a vulture you hang around hoping to be the first among the other vultures to pick up the best deal or a deal of any sort, because that means success, you’ve hunted your food and are taking home the fruits of your labours (literally) to live another day.
25p for 175g of crisps, normal bags of crisps are 25g so that is 7 bags of crisp right there for 25p. I picked up 4 of these bags, that means I got 28 bags of crisps for £1.. FUCKING YEAH!!
I’m not a massive fan of processed food and definitely not a fan of dairy, I am a vegetarian who more or less eats vegan, I will eat dairy now and then but I’m not too keen on it, I just don’t like the taste (except a bit of cheese on a Ristorante fungi pizza for example and other exceptions) but I hadn’t eaten any sugar or sweet things in what felt like months, so I bought these yoghurts too. Some days later I’m still eating these and they are perfectly fine.. They don’t go off do they? I don’t have a problem eating things way beyond their BBE date. I wouldn’t eat something with visible mold on though, haha.. Unless it’s penicillin mold on bread, haha I do have my limits though, if it’s decomposing with bacteria it’s a no no..
Something I do notice though which is quite striking, processed foods such as the last two items, pre packaged in colorful packages are really the foods that are most expensive and most calorific and most bad for you, obviously the last is no revelation but these food are MOST EXPENSIVE and MOST CALORIES. As revealed in my analytics of late. Compared to the bags of kale, carrots and potatoes and breads and pastas etc.. Half a bag of these crisps and two of those tiny 47g yoghurt pots would be 700 calories and about 40 grams of fat, hahaha and all doable in one sitting because they have flavourings in that make you not want to stop consuming, scientist go to great lengths to create these flavours to make us consumer more, I’ve watched documentaries on the subject (I don’t know how people who do that job are contributing to society – they are doing a job that is detrimental to society and responsible for obesity – that’s the distortion of the value of work, there is no value in it half the time, except of course to pay the government income tax) but I’ve not eaten that much fat in weeks, but people consume these things several times a day and think it’s normal food, some people actually think yogurt is healthy and give it to their young children, it is nothing but disgusting dairy (I don’t think humans are meant to consume to milk intended for a calf but that’s another story) full of fat and sugar is yoghurt, it is not a healthy product, quite unhealthy. Those Petite Filous yoghurts were originally £1.76 for 6 small pots. What kind of crazy people pay that sort of money for such crap? Even 44p I had to think about it for some time before deciding they probably weren’t worth 44p but I had not eaten sugar or fat in ages and was craving something sweet so I justified parting with 44p for them. Ooo the extravagance of my lifestyle.
Other food items I’ve bought. 3 packs of cous cous for £1, that means 6 meals to me, just add boiling water and you’ve got a meal in minutes. These are the thing you learn to hunt out, they don’t require much money (gas or electric use) to cook and at 1/2 pack per meal works out at just 16p per meal. And it’s not a perishable, which means no waste 🙂 I am a big fan of dried food, it has its purpose for practicality but I do miss fresh things like veg and salad, tomatoes are a favourite of mine, I miss them very much 😦
I thought the below was a bargain at 50p for 1ltr of alternative milk, usually £1.50 each (out of my price reach, I could never pay that) so bought four. I use this with cheap oats to make porridge, when you fear you will run out of food and fear starvation as long as you’ve got something like this and oats you know you wont go hungry. But I’ve since stocked up on soya milk that was reduced to 15p a litre so not the bargain I thought. haha.
This below cost me £4.00… That’s a massive reduction in the normal supermarket price which would have been almost £10 if I’d just picked these items up at a supermarket and not shopped for bargains in the discount stores. A HUGE saving but it’s still very expensive. 4 litres of soya milk (total £2 from Poundland) Cup a soup (£1 from Poundland), Tortelloni, Noodles & Beetroot 50p, 25p and 25p from Supersaver..
I BOUGHT 5 OF THESE.. 15pence each. WOW!! The BBE date is a 6 months away (not that that means anything to me, lol) but what a bargain. Porridge reserves 🙂 for days there’s nothing else and no money.