The Raw Vegan: Part CI, Out on Her Own

Well, sort of, anyway. DD had gone from living at home to academy to college (with intervening months at home) to college in Spain to living with DS1 and family then back to college. There was never a time when she was truly her own boss. She was either under the “rule” of a family member or in a school situation. Then came the summer between her junior and senior college years.

I don’t quite remember how it came about but she needed a job and a place to live and one of her old schoolmates had an apartment with an extra bedroom. It was decided she would pay part of the rent on the apartment out of the money she made working as a supermarket cashier. We loaded the car and here we went again.

The apartment wasn’t anything fancy but it was in a reasonably quiet neighborhood. Her “landlady” was someone she’d known since day 1 of starting the second grade in church school. She’d been behind her in school but she’d always admired her. It was going to be interesting.

The two young ladies weren’t the only occupants of the apartment. There was also Pepper, the cat. DD told me they tried to keep Pepper off the kitchen counters but he wouldn’t mind. I told her to line things up along the edge of the counters and he wouldn’t jump where he couldn’t see a clear spot to land. I don’t know if they ever tried it but it does work.

DD didn’t have wheels so she had to depend on co-workers to pick her up and bring her home. It wasn’t the ideal arrangement but she made it work.

Meanwhile, back at the ranch, I was feeling better but my weight was still climbing. One day, I was surfing the web trying to find something, anything that would help. I came across a miracle called “coconut oil”. It would do everything but windows and floors and taste good in the process.

I ordered my first container of the wonderful stuff. My corn oil, sunflower oil and olive oil made way for coconut oil. It was supposed to help the healthy functioning of the thyroid and, at the same time, slim a person’s frame.

I started cooking with coconut oil. It fried my eggs, potatoes and grilled cheese sandwiches. The taste of coconut in everything took a little getting used to but then I found out about RBD coconut oil. It’s refined, bleached and deodorized. The process, the article assured me, didn’t alter the benefits of coconut oil. It just made it more palatable. I didn’t mind the taste of the original in desserts but it did make fried green tomatoes taste funny. I ordered a five gallon bucket full. It was a struggle to get it into the house but I made it. It lived in my utility room along with the washer and dryer.

The original containers didn’t go to waste (waist?). They were used to hold a supply of the RBD oil so I didn’t have to open the container daily and dig it out.

Now, there are a couple of things you need to understand about coconut oil. It is very shelf stable. I have coconut oil I bought years ago to use as a skin cream and it’s still good. It sits on the counter in the bathroom so it’s been subjected to temperature extremes. It’s solid below 74 (I think) degrees F and liquid above that (I think). I’m not going to take time to look it up right now but I believe that’s right. You can Google it if you want. What I’m getting at is buying a five gallon bucket of coconut oil isn’t like buying that quantity of a different oil. Other oils will go rancid. Coconut oil won’t. Or it hasn’t in the length of time I’ve had it. I may open it ten years from now and have to pitch it.

Back to my life story. I felt like I had been liberated. I could still have my fried foods and get healthy and slim at the same time. Not so fast! I didn’t lose an ounce of weight. It kept creeping up, slowly but surely. I didn’t stop using coconut oil, though. I figured if I was going to use a free fat, coconut oil was the least of several evils.

I must say that my extreme fatigue was somewhat mitigated. It may have been helped by the coconut oil but it was more probable that it was the medication I was taking.

It had gotten to be an annual pilgrimage to go to Mother’s for her birthday in August. That’s where that August found me. It was her 96th birthday and, as tradition had it, there was a big celebration. We went out in my new car and she was so happy I had dependable transportation. I might be grown and nigh onto 60 but I was still her little girl. After the week was history, I headed back to Tennessee and the hospital.

August was over and September came in and with it, time for DD to go back to California and college. I hadn’t gotten to see her a whole lot that summer but she seemed to be happy with the arrangement. It had been a new experience and, to all appearances, she had handled it well.

There was the trek to the airport and then back home. I had been without company all summer so nothing seemed that different. It really wasn’t in my neck of the woods but I was to find out there was a radical change developing on the west coast.

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