Aunt Daisy’s last “Shootin’ from the Hip” online advice column addressed questions about dieting. That got me thinking about extra pounds hugging Max and me around the hips, belly and other unwanted fat landing pads.
I had fixed a sumptuous Sunday breakfast of cinnamon French toast, grilled spicy smoked sausages, mimosas and a strong brew of Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee. Yummy.
Max and I ate with gusto but soon after, I started feeling guilty about the diet we’d been talking about. The breakfast settled in my queasy stomach.
Max dabbed at his mouth with a cloth napkin and settled back. “Marvelous!” he said, taking another sip of mimosa.
“I can’t eat big breakfasts as I used to.” I got up and went to the bathroom for a packet of Alka Seltzer.
I frowned. “I can’t eat big breakfasts as I used to.” I got up and went to the bathroom for a packet of Alka Seltzer.
Back at the table, I dropped two lozenges into a glass of water and watched them fizz.
In a melancholy mood, Max said, “Remember when we used to go out for Sunday breakfast at the Reading Terminal?”
“I sure do,” I said, swallowing the fizzy water and stifling a burp. “That was decades ago when we lived in Philadelphia.”
Max smiled. “Those were the days! Remember the Down Home Diner?”
“Who could forget? Hash browns, berry pancakes, corn muffins, thick hickory smoked bacon, 3 egg omelets oozing with cheese.” I folded my napkin and shot a glance at Max’s expanding mid section. “I think the time has come for that diet we’ve been talking about.”
His eyebrows shot up. “When did we talk about a diet?”
I hugged my belly with my hands. “Darling,” I said, “we talk about it all the time but never do anything about it.”
Max looked at his waist. He let out a long belabored sigh. “Well …… I guess. When do we start?”
“No better time than immediately after grocery shopping for lettuce, veggies, fish, and low cal diary products. No bread, rice, potatoes or other carbs.”
“When would that be?”
“How about this afternoon?”
He groaned. “So soon?”
“Buck up, dear! We’ll be fine and you’ll thank me in the end.”
“What about drinks and nightcaps?”
“The diet book I’ve been reading says to abstain for two weeks. Then we can have two drinks of wine with lots of ice each evening.”
“It sounds more like a sentence than a diet.”
I patted him on the back. That afternoon we went grocery shopping.
The next day for breakfast, I made a low fat cheese egg white omelet accompanied by tomato juice. For lunch we had a salad with chunks of poached chicken breast doused with a tablespoon of vinaigrette dressing. For dinner, a small piece of grilled fish with roasted veggies on the side.
“How’s the diet so far?” I asked, scraping the last bit from my plate.
Max gave me a wide grin. “Delicious! Just delicious!”
“Not in the slightest.”
Later, as we sat reading by the pool with glasses of lemonade beside us, I heard a toot toot announcing the bread man’s bicycle, his cart filled with freshly baked rolls.
Max yawned. “I think I’ll just take a short stroll around the block.”
I opened the window in the front door just a crack and peeked out after Max. He looked over his shoulder in the direction of the door. When he was satisfied I wasn’t watching, he bought a roll, broke it in half and stuffed it in his cheeks. He looked every ounce a criminal. Hello, Vito Corleone.
After he swallowed, he walked back to the front door. I sprinted to my chair by the pool before he discovered me. When he sat back down, he acted nonchalant.
“Nice stroll, dear?” I asked.
He patted his stomach. “Nothing like a digestive constitutional after dinner.”
I let Max’s weensy lapse go. After all, we still had several weeks on the diet and I didn’t want him to fall off the wagon before we even really started.
We will win, Max dear! Inch by hungry inch.