I had to go to the supermarket, there was nothing to eat and my son with a cough and a cold needing things to take back to university with him. En route to the little town, just coming to the bypass, I knew I was sliding into a blood sugar low and remembered I hadn’t eaten for some hours. Moments later a terrible craving came upon me for food. I do not absorb nutrients efficiently so this is common. I picture slabs of fish, meat, cheese – protein. I will do what is necessary to get it, if I don’t it is a bad outlook (I shiver, change colour and am best avoided). Last year, after teaching the two-hour class that was fifty-minutes drive from my home, it would be a toss-up between racing to the nearest garage for food or putting my foot down to get home. The food won and I would sit in the car by a petrol pump cramming it in before racing home to sleep like the dead for three hours.
I say I am one of the lucky ones and it is so, the heroes being those who are mostly house or bed-bound and either finding a living source within even so, or that the illness overwhelms them. I have been there and take nothing for granted.
So it was that I zoomed into a MacDonald’s drive-through place and ordered a double cheeseburger and medium coffee. Like others in the right-thinking universe I avoid the place, but it is cheap and quick and gives you an instant hit. The woman handing out the wrapped cheeseburger at window no. 4 asked if I wanted sugar with my coffee. I said yes and crammed the burger into my mouth. She smiled and asked how many, I said one. She fished around and held out her palm in which there were two paper tubes of sugar and a wooden stick to stir with, and she gave me a wide-open smile from her eyes. I took it in with the first mouthful I swallowed and it was good. “One extra for luck,” she said. “You look hungry.” She had a good voice too. Kind. I said I was, very hungry, but this would make it better. She looked pleased. Someone drove up behind and I moved on. I drank the coffee in the supermarket carpark. I had both sugars. Sometimes life is so sweet. So good.