So… Back from holidays, and, despite 14 consecutive days of eating, drinking and paying no heed whatsoever to the 5:2 regime, I seem to have remained exactly the same weight. But for how long?
Last Monday (August bank holiday) it was back to the miso broth for supper and – to the chagrin of our neighbours – we boldly said no to a glass of wine and cake in the afternoon, and they, too, had to drink plain old tea…
But Thursday was an early birthday celebration for our daughter Coco, who turned 25 yesterday – so we swapped our “starving” days around and went to her choice of restaurant, Byron; there ploughing through cheese melted nachos, potato skins, and deep fried calamares. We majored on cheese burgers, fries, courgette fritters and - oh yes - let’s not forget the onion rings, followed by desserts to share (Eton mess and rocky road…). I am someone who would normally pick the skinny burger – the one without the bun and chips that comes with a healthy side salad. What has come over me? I say it’s complacency. Utter complacency that, after a holiday where I ate steak and chips with creamy pepper sauce, even creamier frogs legs gratin, and a sumptuous quail stuffed with cepes and foie gras, I had remained the same weight.
The Byron meal is not something I would normally choose – and, having chomped my way through it, I am now more convinced than ever that there is something addictive about burgers, fries and all the other trimmings. For I now find myself thinking about going back – and I have already worked out that next time the courgette fries will be better with a healthy squirt of mayo on them…
Bella and I passed the Charing Cross Road Byron today, and the smell had a Pavlovian effect on me. I almost heard myself say: “well we could go there” – planning that I’d try the salmon this time, with frites.
We ended up in Pret – despite Bella just having told me that to the best of her knowledge it’s owned by McDonalds, and me responding that this would not surprise me at all. Bella already knew exactly what she wanted – the tuna baguette “which has chives in the mayo”.
I wasn’t even hungry – although I knew I soon would be. I eyed the Sushi, but could hear Steve’s voice in my head saying, “I’d never eat Sushi that wasn’t 100% fresh and made in the last few minutes”. I looked at the salads – Bella, telling me the chicken one was great.
I despaired of the sandwich selection – the choice seems to have shrunk over recent years. Didn’t they used to do a prawn marie rose, and a mozza with tomato?? Or am I imagining things? The most appetising was a child’s ham sandwich – but – complacent after yesterday’s fast – my hand reached out for the Classic Super Club. All 505 calories of it. Though I am appeased to discover it’s just 505, not 750 as I had imagined as I plunged into all that mayo, and the rather nasty mystery flavour that I take to be the unique "Pret seasoning" as I swear it was the same reason I went off their crayfish sandwich.
I now learn that there is a slimline version of the Super Club – I didn’t see it today, but, on my way home, I decided this was the last time I have a Pret sandwich. And, next time in Byron, it has to be the skinny or the salmon… The 5.2 is no excuse to go mad five days a week.