Sunday, September 15, 2013

Overheard at Lunch

We spent the majority of our time out in the field this past week, so we weren't able to get to the chow hall for lunch. Whenever that happens, we're relegated to MREs. A couple of short exchanges occurred in conjunction with that and I thought I might share with you.

First, I have to say that the MREs have definitely gotten better over the years. If you've never seen one, they come in a big ol' pouch with several smaller pouches inside and all of the food is fully-cooked and sealed. Presentation is lacking in all cases, though, to put it mildly. Things that just couldn't be stomached, like Ham & Cheese Omelet and Corned Beef Hash have been replaced by Buffalo Chicken, Southwest Beef & Black Bean, and Chicken Fajita, and they now all include heaters instead of leaving it to you to figure that part out. People also have their favorite sides. Sit down with a group of people eating MREs, and it won't be long before it turns into a Middle East market with people trading their Apple Sauce for the Protein Shake, the Tootsie Rolls for the White Chocolate Raspberry Cookie, or the Beef Jerky for the Jalapeno Cheese Whiz. And, then, when it's all done, all the leftovers that no one wanted get put into a box for people to take later if they want them. As if the same group of people that decided it wasn't worth it then would take it later!

So, one day, we were out in the field and one of our instructors told us we were going to do XYZ and then we'd sit down and get some food from Mr E's restaurant. I said, "Ya know, I've been to that restaurant several times, and I'm just not all that impressed!"

Another day, I was sittin' down with the fellas, popping open an MRE I hadn't tried before: Chicken Pesto Pasta. I heated it up, peeled it open, looked inside at something that resembled day-old Hamburger Helper that had been put into a plastic bag and vacuum-sealed, and said, "Ah! Whaddaya know? It looks like an MRE!" One of the other guys in the room said, "Look, I don't want to ruin it for you, but it tastes like one, too!" Yeah, I know...Ba-doom-boom. Sad humor, but when you're stuck out in the field eating MREs, you have to find humor where you can!

1 comment:

  1. Loved the article about your "new" life. We're in the midst of our new life now, too since Kevin's at CH-BOLC this summer. I'm loving your blog... I'll be sure to share it with him. Glad to see that Lauren's been doing well, too. I realized that the last time we saw you guys was at LTC right after the surgery, maybe?
    Many blessings on you and your family! Chaney