I've been trying so hard to fully engage in Kenyan life, and I haven't allowed myself to fall into dreamy reminiscences of American culture.
Well, until now.
When I was in the hospital, there wasn't much to do. I watched a lot of crappy American movies, finished a few books. Most of the time I slept. But sometimes, I let myself think about American food. And once I started, I was lost.
Today, dear readers, we're going to explore a small sample of things I miss about America. A futile exercise, perhaps, but next time you partake in any of the following, just think of me and savor it a little more. Send me the yum vibe thousands of miles away.
THINGS I MISS (A PARTIAL LIST)
When I was in the hospital, I fantasized about cheese. CHEEEEEEESEEEE. You don't know what you got til it's gone, Americans. I wanted a grilled cheese so hard. I wanted my mom's Brie with fig jam spread on top of it. And the first meal I had after I was discharged? Pizza.
Was it good pizza? Not really.
Am I still craving cheese? Of course I am!
Cereal. Oh, dear god, cereal. Those of you who know me well know I am obsessed with cereal. I eat a hearty bowl of Kashi GoLean Crunch, or GoLean Crisp, or Total, or Cracklin' Oat Bran, or Frosted Mini Wheats, every single day of my life. Many times, I eat two. I've been known to eat three bowls of cereal in one day.
They just don't really DO cereal here. It breaks my little heart. I feel like : (
For breakfast, every day here, we have PB and J. EVERY DAY! And what's our snack during chai time? PB AND J! Have you ever lived on a diet of 50% PB and J? I have, actually, but that was in elementary school. My taste buds have grown up.
Milk. I am almost lost for words on this one. Milk and I have a long and extensive history together. I drink milk at home instead of water. Cold, nonfat milk, every morning, afternoon and night. I am a discerning lactose consumer, as I prefer the freshly-delivered local milk to the store-bough organic milk. Kenyans do not drink nonfat milk. There is not a single bag (yes, they do milk in bags, like those Canadians) of nonfat milk in the Nakumatt. It's all WHOLE milk. And they don't even drink GLASSES of milk -- it's only used for cooking and for chai.
There are few things in my life I would not give up for a glass of cold milk right now.
Well, we all know how I feel about cupcakes. Here are a few words: Obsession. Love. Passion. Addiction. I'm in a very serious and dedicated relationship with cupcakes. But Kenyans, although they're skilled at many thing, are just awful at baking. AWFUL. After three months of baking delicious noms twice or three times a week, it's been a difficult transition.
Sidenote: For those of you that don't know, I have another blog where I write about baking : www.n-omnom.blogspot.com. Actually, most of you don't know about this, because my mother is the sole subscriber to that blog. This seems to me like the epitome of "unconditional love," i.e. I will follow my daughter's blog even though it just spams up my inbox.
However, there are a few things that have quenched my cravings in Kenya. There are a few "American-style" restaurants here, which serve quasi-American food. I've had a fantastic brownie at one of these places, and there's an AWESOME fro-yo place in the mall. And today, I bought this:
And as long as I have Nutella, I think I can survive.