Recipes for disaster

I cannot think of a good meme for this month. I think only about food, and trying to make sure we have enough to eat, because little comes from outside anymore. So I will do my meme about this. Tell me your recipe for disaster: What are you eating and how do you cook it? Perhaps we can help each other with some ideas.

I will give my answer, but first I must tell you something about me. I am an art student, you all know, but you do not know I could be a medical student. I am very good at biology and other sciences in school, but I do not like to dissect the animals, so I choose to study art. This is because one day in school we have to dissect a rat. We are three girls and one rat, and nobody wants to put in the scalpel. When I am tired with arguing, I say “I will do it.” I get ready, and a boy behind me pushes my arm, so the scalpel slips in the gut of the rat and there is rat shit and bad smells coming out, so we jump back and we are screaming, and he is laughing, and that is biology class – boys laughing, girls squealing and waving hands in front of our faces, and covering our mouth to look around and see which boy is laughing at us the most.

I always love animals, and my cat loves me too, because he brings to me a present – a big present – adult rat, almost 30cm! Now, I feed you, he says. We have very little protein now in our food, with only noodles, rice and some little beans in the store, and sometimes a stew with the lab animals and vegetables we farm, but not much to go around. I am very hungry. The rat smells bad, but looks healthy (except dead). I know it can have many bad diseases and fleas. I wear a mask and gloves to pick it up, and I put plastic on top of the table, and get a sharp knife. If you see me, you will think I am a vet doing a surgery. I think of the dissecting lesson at school, and when the knife touches the skin I am squealing a little. Then I get a feeling, like I am two people, and one is squealing and the other is standing next to her and says: “What is the matter with you? You organise a quarantine. You sit all night with a dead girl in the next room. You bury a hundred people. This is just a dead rat.”

This is when I know I can do this. I am not scared, and I am not squeamish. Truly, I never was. At school, I am squealing because the other girls are squealing. But I am not that girl. Maybe the others are not that girl, too. That girl is not real, and now my life is too real, I cannot pretend to be that girl.

So I am skinning and gutting and washing and cooking my rat with a little cabbage in a little water on the tiny stove in my room, because I cannot go to the big kitchen with private food. I know others do this sometimes, but even though I no longer go to the meetings, I am seen with the committee and must be an example. I put a little in a bowl for the cat, and then I eat everything to the bones. It is not the best, but when you are hungry, everything tastes good. The cat does not agree; he looks at me to say, “I expect better from you.”
“You are right,” I say. “I should be a medical student.”

Maybe if we are still here next year, if lectures begin again, I will transfer.


12 thoughts on “Recipes for disaster

  1. Hey, no shame in eating rodents – I’ve set traps around the store, I consider it a treat every time one goes off. I sometimes gather some empty packaging and break up some wooden furniture and start a little fire up on the roof – they’re better spit-roasted than stewed, I find. Make sure they’re well-cooked, though, or the little buggers’ll get their revenge.

      • We haven’t had a lot of luck with trapping or hunting – we don’t have very good bait. I’d give a lot for a fresh loaf of bread right now.

        • I still got sacks of flour, and once you get hold of a bit of yeast, it grows itself if you keep it right. I’ve baked some awesome bread – wish I could get some to you, dude.

          • I got some flour and dried yeast, but not enough fuel to keep a fire hot enough to bake it. I can make a sort of unleavened flatbread on the camp stove, but it’s not that good. How are you getting the fuel to run an oven?

              • Wow, that was normally a two-dude job, and time-consuming, too – normally you skived off, when you could ;-). You must have arms like tree trunks by now.

                  • Cooking fuel is my bottleneck too. I’ve been working on a simple solar oven – there’s lots of plans online. I know you can bake bread in the commercial ones, not sure about my homemade effort. My problem is it’s hardly ever sunny here for long enough to give it a good test.

                    Great post, Mei! You and the cat are a good team. I’m glad you got some protein

                    • I fear I’d have similar issues with anything requiring reliable weather. Our solar panels are good for boosting the charge on the batteries we charge our handsets and workset from while we’re stationary, but we have to move on every now and then if only to get some extra charge from the dynamos in the wheels.

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