Thursday, October 11, 2012

Day 7.

I've skipped a few days, but simply because I've had too much to do and I don't even have time usually to open my lap-top for any other purposes than school related work. However, I have continued with the vegan week and sadly it has come to an official end. "Official", because I actually enjoy it and as my vegan foods(chocolate, cookies and sausages!!) arrived, I will probably continue it for longer. I have to admit that it can get quite tough eventually and on Monday evening, when I had visited the elderly and finished running club, I was completely sure that human body is not capable of doing everything we demand it to do. I had been doing my homework during the free breaks I had, tried to memorise  everything for Spanish, eat only vegetables and then I need to concentrate to talk to old people who would also rather take a nap instead..... and on the top of all this, I demand myself to do sprints...........
It is already quite questionable whether a human is supposed to study as much as we do....  Sometimes it really feels like we are not meant to deal with the pressure and therefore struggle to handle it, but at the same time everything seems impossible until it's done. I survived the day, I made it through school the next day, played table tennis and survived the house meeting. Well basically the first half of the week was just a killer. I thought that everything is impossible and everything I felt is a complete opposite to what I´ve been feeling today and yesterday. Woke up an hour before my alarm clock today and was full of energy. Everything was suddenly so positive, I don´t know what´s going on with my emotions, whether it´s the vegan diet or always having to plan my time properly, but I feel so... free. there is no way to express what I'm feeling...feeligns are weird :D
But at the same time, the first half of the week is always tougher, as there´s no free time, free lessons or anything, so no wonder that it was even harder as I had to keep an eye on what I eat.
Otherwise my vegan week was highly successful...despite the extremely exhausting Monday. I have nice plans for the weekend as well and I once again can't believe it's Friday again... Only two more weeks until the half-term break and I have no idea what to make of it. My life has never been so different... I want  to go back home, but all the reasons for it have changed once again. Getting away from school for a week, seeing my family and friends, sleeping until 2 PM every day.... uuuh, that's tempting and two weeks that are left will pass by incredibly quickly. I can't believe it has already been over a month.. seems like just yesterday, but at the same time I've done so much that I could write a whole book about those past months...
 This Saturday, for example, will be the first time I'm gonna volunteer for KEEN. I'll be working with disabled children and arranging activities for them, which will be very interesting and at the same time challenging. And  I have some plans for Sunday, which I hope to share with you after I've done it :))) Anyway there is a lot going on all the time and my last two weekends before the half-term break will be amazing!!!!

Monday, October 8, 2012

Day 3: Not exactly a vegan burger... Day 4: Chinese food.

Today.....didn't go as planned. Just as simple as that. I was waiting for the vegan burger the whole day!!! Ate my apples and drank my smoothies and finished my English essay on "blasphemy laws vs. free speech" and looked forward to the evening. sorry, I think I need to re-word it. I was REALLLY hungry and NEEDED to get something to eat as quickly as possible. The walk to The Gardeners Arms, wasn't actually long at all. Anna, Marci and Luka were a really good company and  we managed to work our way there with a little help from google maps. Proud of my skills. However, once we got there we were basically kicked-out as we were all under-aged :D That's what I mean by that it didn't went as planned. So there we are...vegan burgers out of Italian restaurant serving anything vegan...queues were huge everywhere else.... You can only imagine my disappointment and how difficult it was to conceal it. oh well..let's take a walk to the city center then and go to pizza hut. Because vegetarian pizzas shouldnt consist any dairy products. A true Italian confirmed that putting milk in a pizza base should be considered a crime, so no way that they have any milk in the pizza base. Oh well, as you might already guess, they had dairy products in every dish except....chicken wings. So much win right? Well actually getting a free salad after that disappointment wasn't TOO bad. I could actually enjoy the evening and watch my favorite pepperoni pizza  getting eaten without begging for a bite. After those unexpected events we joined a few people in the common room and watched "10 days I hate about you" and ate vegan candies, which apparently are available in Tesco. Well probably they don't have vegan chocolate, because everything that I've checked "may contain milk". But it's really not as big of a problem as it may feel.. I've discovered so many other foods, which I didn't know could even exist, so I'm very thankful for my diet for showing me those. Overall, I think we all were quite pleased with the evening :)

Day 4

So I got to sleep late again and enjoy the morning sunshine at 12 o'clock. Those late mornings are really necessary for me and probably to many people, so I didn't worry too much about the amount of work I need to get done. Went to the city centre with Marci and Anna, did some food shopping and finished in a vegan-friendly cafe, where I enjoyed a sandwich and conversation with marciiii. I don't know how's it possible, but I really don't pay too much attention to food in those cases. I do pay attention to the fact that it's vegan, but I don't constantly think about it. Four days ago I was expecting to be hungry all the time and wanting to eat  all sugary-pastries, but it hasn't turned out like this at all. I've been told that people envy my will-power and determination, as I haven't had anything to do with even being a vegetarian, but I believe that everyone can actually do it. It's true, that it needs some determination and will to try it out, but the rest is not as hard as it seems. At least not the beginning of it.. You do have plenty of food to eat and I got even more evidence to it later in the evening. I went to a Chinese restaurant with a couple of friends and banged my head on the table, as I had completely forgotten how many vegan dishes does a Chinese restaurant has to offer. Rice with my favorite sweet-sour sauce is completely vegan!! What a blessing that we have Chinese food everywhere! Got to love globalisation!
I do have to admit once again, that going vegan for a week, hasn´t changed y sleeping habits((yet?) so I better get some sleep now, as I have loads of activities tomorrow that require a lot of energy. School, visiting the elderly, running club and homework...

Saturday, October 6, 2012

So tell me family now what do you think ? 
Watch it all go down the great big sink. 
Watch how the scum it rises to the top. 
Don't you wonder when it's all gonna stop? 
Sometimes I wonder how we do sleep, 
serving the dodgy companies we keep.
All kicking and scrounging for the very first place -
dictionary definition of a rat race. 
Pay off those losers we elect to lead,
stealing from the mouths that we're meant to feed. 
Enslaving the very clothes upon my back, 
I feel the sting but I hear no crack, no crack, I'm saying

Running through the fire, running through the flame,
running through the hatred, pushing through the blame,
running through the hopelessness and shame, 
revolution already underway.

Big Heavy Pirates man digging those holes
messing with something that they can't control. 
Tresspassing lands where they don't belong,
all I hear is screaming where there once were songs.
I got my brothers there fighting those wars, 
fighting over scraps and scraping their souls.
Under a blanket of a fire and pride
that can't keep us warm for the cold inside, 
inside, I'm saying

Running through the fire, running through the flame,
running through the hatred, pushing through the blame,
running through the hopelessness and shame, 
revolution already underway.

So tell me when you think we're gonna rise
Wake from this slumber wipe the tears from our eyes?
Yes from this nightmare yes I must now wake,
open my fist my destiny I take !
Good people sick and tired of being pushed around, 
we call them kings but I see no crown. 
Tell me when you think we'll just stand up, 
say enough is enough is enoughenough I'm saying

Running through the fire, running through the flame,
running through the hatred, pushing through the blame,
running through the hopelessness and shame, 
revolution already underway.

Take back your feet, take back your hands.
Take back your words, take back your lands.
Take back your heart, take back your pride.
Don't got to run, don't got to hide.

Day 2 : "You are what you eat"

As the second day is officially over in 5 minutes(not that counting minutes will even be necessary), It's time for me to summary what has happened. I just finished watching a documentary called "Food matters" and i would definitely advise it to every one. It also gave me even better motivation for doing this and in order to now understand what may really drive people into eating more vegetarian-vegan food. It's only the second day of my "diet", but I already feel that it's leading to something bigger and better. I might sound like a person who's been brainwashed, but after you've watched the documentary and actually seen that it is not difficult to adapt that lifestyle, your own view may change as well. I'm not trying to convert anyone, but I find it important to tell people to actually watch what they eat. Even little changes make a difference and make you feel a lot better. I can't yet entirely say that I'm feeling a difference, because, as I've already mentioned, it is only the second day and I would say that my earlier eating habits were relatively healthy. Eating the right things is just something I've been taught unconsciously from my childhood. Don't misinterpret it, because neither of my parents are complete vegetarians or vegans, but just that I grew up in a small town where it was natural to just go and pick strawberries from your back yard and even after moving to Tallinn, it never crossed my mind to not eat seasonal food. So overall, even though I haven't paid any significant attention to what I'm eating, the "right" things have always been there available for me. So maybe that's part of why it hasn't turned out as difficult as I expected. Two days is absolutely insignificant though, so I shouldn't put my hopes up that it will continue this way, but my general view is now positive. Having a vegan-diet is of course an extreme form of vegetarianism, so even though excluding all dairy-products hasn't offered me a huge challenge so far, it will still affect me, even if it's going to last only for a week. This is still a change that I need to adapt to, but after watching the movie I see the necessity of eating more nutrient-rich foods and avoid processed food. 
Otherwise, today is Friday which means the weekend is coming and I can finally relax. Deadlines seem further, as I can manage my time and I can now go and try out that vegan restaurant :) Trying out a vegan-diet hasn't stopped me from anything, I still went to gym today, ate breakfast, lunch(THAT tomato soup, NJOMM) and dinner and I haven't found it hard to resist animal-foods. Why would I? I can get everything I need...
So tomorrow I'll hopefully post you some photos of the delicious vegan-burgers.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Trying out vegan diet for a week. My motives, introduction and Day 1

This post will be a little different from the previous ones. I should rather say that the next 7 posts will be concentrating on a challenge I've decided to take. I have no idea where the idea exactly came from, but I've always been interested in vegetarianism and veganism. Although I'm not a vegan or not even a vegetarian I understand their motives and value their commitment highly. Therefore I hope no-one misinterprets my aim in this challenge and understands that it's all about my personal interest.
So the challenge I've taken is to try out their lifestyle, precisely veganism, for a week. Many may say that this limited time will not give me an good idea of veganism. At this point, I must say that this is not my intention. I know what veganism is and I've done plenty of research on their nutrition, I've even ordered some vegan chocolate, sweets and sausages(!!). My aim is not to get what veganism is, but to understand how determined they must be and to see what obstacles come on the way. I do know that one week is not comparable to actually experiencing it but it will give me a glimpse of the pros and cons of being a vegan, without entirely excluding the moral benefits. During this week, my blog is transformed into a informal diary where I'll note down how it has affected me so far.  I've talked to vegetarians and vegans, who have given me an idea of what I can expect. I also want to thank them for the help and support. I also feel the need to note that I hope my other friends will not judge, tempt or talk about it too much, as you can follow it all here and I appreciate your understanding. 
 I agree that one week may not be enough to affect my social life too much, for example going to eat out with friends and having to say no to basically everything. I also have know that I can not label it as being a full-vegan-for-a-week, as veganism also includes more than just abstaining from animal-based foods. At this point, I'd like to go on to my first day as trying out vegan diet for a week. 

Day 1

I can confidently say that I'm as prepared as I can possibly be, excluding some natural draw backs such as finding out that my chocolate will not arrive until the end of the month..... Which means basically that  I will abstain from chocolate among other things. How awful as it may sound, it's not gonna make a huge difference. I've had a week without any added sugar or sweet products, and the benefits of it were undescribable. To make it short and not to concentrate on my previous weird challenge, I will just say that as my blood sugar was normal without extra sugar, it was quite enjoyable. 
However my preparation for the week didn't consist of only ordering chocolate. I went to a local supermarket just 15 minutes away with my vegetarian friend(you are incredibly precious, Marci!!), who helped me buy food for the next days without any unconscious mistakes. I'm now stocked with vegan bread, various salads, smoothies and fruits, which will help me get through the next days. We are also planning to go to a vegan restaurant this weekend which already sounds to be delicious!
So I'd say there weren't many draw backs today and I coped well. I also discovered that it's even possible to buy some vegan snacks from school. It is indeed limited, but I'm happy that there's any at all. A few smoothies can actually fill you up very quickly after school and you have more free time during lunch as you don't need to queue for any food and can easily prepare it at home. I'm still a bit worried about the limitations I have, as it's not very varied, but I do my best to maintain my determination. The tomato soup I had for lunch was perfect and as you can imagine, I still find it incredibly delicious. I'm glad I discovered it and am able to now keep buying it even after my vegan-week will end. So even though I can't join others at the cookies time(a break time after school, where you can get tea, coffee and biscuits) and have to watch them drink their Latte and eat freely, there's nothing tempting about it. 
So I'll finish it today and provide you with more information tomorrow. One day as a vegan hasn't changed my sleeping habits and I still need my at least 8-hour beauty sleep(figuratively speaking).