Ok, so first of all, I have a horrible memory. If you know me well, you know that I tend to forget a lot of things, often. It's not my short term memory that fails me, but the long term. I'm great about remembering important dates like birthday's, anniversaries, etc., however when it comes to the details of a trip or funny things that happened in HS or College... I draw a blank.
This is why I need my dear friend Allison in my life (among many, many other reasons)- because she has a perfect memory. So, Al, I might need your help on this.
Back in High School, our church took a mission trip down to Jamaica. We went twice: once in 1999 and again in 2001 (where Al actually met Brian and now they're in love and getting MARRIED in JULY!!). I'm pretty sure it was the second trip to Jamaica when our group went to Ocho Rios and after a hard week of building foundations, laying concrete, etc. for a deaf community in the center of the island, we enjoyed the crystal clear waters and a chance to relax. A group of us climbed the waterfalls and then the excursions included: getting your hair braided in cornrows, snorkeling or just laying out on the beach. Al & I had been two years before, we had already done the touristy things so we peaced out and headed out to the beach.
We picked our spot on the white sands, layed out our towels and began our usual conversation about boys and other relevant HS topics of conversation. We started to get hungry and then went over to the cabana bar. We asked for water and noticed that a lot of people were eating something that looked like a Hot Pocket. We thought we would gave it a try. Two, please.
I will have to add this point: I was a strict vegetarian for 8 years or so. I can't really remember when I started, but for most of HS & College, I didn't eat anything with meat. Now, after being a Nanny where I made 3 meals a day for two precious boys, I started to incorporate meat back into my meals, my favorites being: ground beef, pepperoni & bbq. Strange I know because they're like the unhealthiest meats of all. I'm not opposed to meat and will usually eat it if someone makes it for me, but most of the time I don't choose it. But back then, I didn't eat meat at all.
So Al & I get our patties and go to sit down. We take a bite and I'm telling you it is the most delicious thing I've ever had in my life. Perhaps it was the setting: blue sky, clear water, sunny day, good times w/ friends... or maybe I was just starving but the flavors and everything about it was amazing. But then we realize that it has meat in it. Of course we're not really sure what else is in it. We are in Jamaica and got it from this cabana made of straw and not much else. But I'm telling you the unbelievable taste of that patty trumped any kind of real fear for what was actually inside of it, how/where it was made and especially: the meat inside. It became our secret. One of those things that isn't a big deal now that I look back on it, but at the time we were the only ones who had access to this incredible find and only knew that after 4 years of not eating any meat, I broke my 'fast'.
We later joked about our "Vegetarian" patties... and have throughout the years. I'm not sure that we ever really told anyone... not that there's much to tell. But it was one of those inside jokes b/t me & Al.
The other day I was looking through one of my favorite websites and couldn't believe what I found:
Al & I got a great laugh out of it. I hope that little cabana is still there and one day we can go back and enjoy our favorite vegetarian patties.