Who? Us?

We are two disabled, oldish women who have been adventuring through life for years. We are talking about how disabilities, both visible and not, change the way we enjoy our retirement.

Thursday, December 31, 2015

What about Restaurants?

I am vegan. I also use a scooter to get around.  Even when I could walk, being a vegan made most restaurants impossible for me to eat in.  

Most people do not understand what being a vegan means.  We eat no meat. No, not fish either, because fish is meat. We also don’t eat things with meat products in them. Gravy, for example, is usually made with some sort of meat product. So gravy is out. 

It seems as if people think that if you can’t see the meat, it’s OK to eat. An animal still had to lose its life to make that gravy.  

For me, being vegan has to do with health. I was diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis over 40 years ago. I knew it was an autoimmune disease, an allergy, if you will. So I started experimenting with what I ate to see if that made any difference. I stopped eating red meat and I felt better and hurt less.  Then I stopped eating all meat and felt much better. Hmm, perhaps I was onto something.  

I have always been allergic to milk and dairy products.  Omitting those from my diet was more difficult because milk products hide everywhere. Look at labels and you will find lactose or casein in so very many of them.   

So I am a label reader. Even if the product I want to buy was milk free last week, that doesn’t mean it will be this time.  

You can easily see why restaurants don’t really want me as a customer. I spend no money and take up space as a non paying customer. The wait staff is inconvenienced and the restaurant doesn’t make a dime.

Add inaccessibility to that equation and it now becomes impossible for me to eat a dinner that I did not cook in my own kitchen. I often say, I don’t buy food; I buy ingredients.

It has always seemed strange to me that a restaurant could build a fancy new building with lots of space between tables, a bright shiny new kitchen that said they cook vegan food and then put ONE step to climb to get in the building.  Go figure.

Needless to say, we won’t be having dinner out to celebrate New Year’s Eve.

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