My 1998 Black Honda Civic was packed completely, yet the back seat had every plant Martha, my best friend, navigator, AKA Carrots, could not live with out. We just finished our sophomore year as a Kilgore Rangerette and both decided to move across the country from Texas to Chicago to finish college. Martha was accepted to Loyola University to study political science and I was off to University of Illinois to become a dietitians, still did not know exactly how that would happen. Martha got the nick name of carrots from me because she had perfect vision and I was on my way to being blind.
As we set off across the country with our most prize possessions, plants, and clothes we also had the great idea to visit every person we knew who lived in the Mid-West. We stopped first in Kasnsa city to see Martha’s childhood friends. I remember going to lunch with everyone and thinking how hip and bohemian everyone was, and eating the latest cool vegetarian things that I just went a long with and not really knowing if food should taste like that. Next stop was Iowa, yes it was a bit out of the direct line to Chicago. Iowa is where my parents are from and my grandparents live To me Iowa was been and always will be the great vacation spot. While at my grandparents we of course we had traditional Iowa food- CORN!!! Sweet corn brings back so many fun childhood vacation memories, and truly makes me smile.
Back on the road towards Chicago and the next chapter in my life. As we drove of course we had snacks and would stop for more snacks. We stopped in at a McDonalds for Happy Meals and ice cream, and after this we got lost in the back roads of Iowa. This was the ONLY time we got lost on our entire trip!
Since I am the driver, peas, and Martha is the navigator, carrots she was in charge of finding our new apartment address. Sometimes I am not the best when it comes to details. About a month earlier we came to Chicago to finf a place to live, and we did not really know the city all too well. We found a place yet I did not write down the address, I remembered it was on a street that possible beginning with an H; side note I am also dyslexic so who truly knew what the letter should be.
Our first night in our apartment as “adults” we decided to celebrate. We went to the only grocery store we could find and bought whip cream and dark chocolate ice cream. We brought our dinner and cups of Vodka and Sprite to the roof to celebrate our first night
What I learned about me and my relationship with food on this cross country trip is that I love food and yet truly had no clue what that ment to me. The journey begins!
Adrien Paczosa is a Registered and Licensed Dietitian practicing in Austin, Texas and the surrounding counties.
She is the owner and founder of I Live Well Nutrition her Dietitian practice which started in 2007 and serves clients in the Austin, Texas area in two locations. Fearless Practitioners, the division of her business that offers training to dietitians and wellness professionals.