I am spending the last week of August in Aruba and my is it beautiful. This is my first trip as a vegan and I knew it was going to have its ups and downs but mostly downs. As a precaution I packed every vegan snack I could think of: nuts, granola bars, applesauce, oatmeal, powder coconut milk, and hemp protein powder. I was determined to stay alive.
Upon arriving I knew my options would be limited. At an all-inclusive resort I knew there would be vegetarian options smothered in cheese. My biggest obstacle was finding items that weren’t doused in milk and cheese. I enjoy the choices and getting creative, so the struggle isn’t nearly as hard as I expected it to be.
The interesting thing about all-inclusive resorts is that they tend to have restaurants where you can have your meals made to order. I went to a seafood restaurant last night where the two vegetarian options contained cheese. I spoke to the waitor and told him that I did not eat meat, eggs, or dairy. He asked me what I wanted to eat because I was allergic to these ingredients. I was shocked to say the least. Apparently people who do not meat, eggs, or dairy do so because they are deathly allergic. It is as if to say that people only remove these foods from their diets out of necessity, which is true for some, but not for me.
I hate to sound self-righteous, but we need to move out of that mode of thinking. When a person tells you that they are refraining from eating certain foods do not automatically assume that there is no other choice. Some people choose to eat meat and some not. Others choose to only eat candy and others not. This illusion that vegetables sustaining a person’s life as a form of dietary recourse is unfair. We need to spread the word that veganism can be a choice and a great one at that.