All first days back are always difficult, this one particularly so, since I honestly don't know where to start! So much has happened in the last 3-4 months that (although I was asleep for at least half of the time) subject matter is too freely available, and all mixed up in my mind! Obviously I have already started with a little piece about "hospitals and those who work in them", which isn't finished, and will be continued over the weeks to come, and there is the other side of the coin, my side-that of the patients and the problems they have, and the amusing things that happen. That will take months to work over in my head, and should certain details seem to be mixed up, or should the time plan seem to be deranged, bear with me, that is because it is deranged, like me, at the time!
I intend to break up the Health and Hospital accounts with little amusing articles, as and when I feel the urge! This is to give my brain a chance to slow down, and give yours the chance to digest what you may be reading.
Talking about digesting, I shall start with a little piece dealing with a typical week of foodstuffs in a French Hospital, by publishing the menus offered.
I actually entered Hospital with a relatively sane sense of food appreciation, and I came out of hospital with a much sharpened wish to eat something which not only SOUNDED good, but which TASTED good! I know that institutional food is always criticised but having personally worked as a civilian chef, for the Army, I can tell you that the much and often criticised Army food, is actually second to none, anywhere in the world! Having worked as a chef in Hospital kitchens, I can assure you that it is not the chef's fault, nor the lack of good product which gives a finished product unappetising to everybody. This is due to certain (in my view overemphasized) rules regarding the use of salt and savour agents. Without question there are cases when salt has to be completely cut out, but not all patients are concerned, although all patients are served the same! I ask myself whether the morale (phsychologically) is raised by being served tastless, grey runny stuff purporting to be fish in a something or other sauce! Much work could be done in this field, since often the meal-times are the only distraction one has in the aimless, endless Hospital day!
Anyway, here is "A week's meals in Hospital".
Monday Lunchtime: Coeur de Scarole (Lettuce heart),Entrecote grillee (grilled sirloin steak),Pommes de Terre vapeur (steamed potatoes) Brocolis sautees (fried brocolli), Fromage demi-sel (fresh cream cheese), Fruit - Cafe.
Tuesday Lunchtime: Celery rave rapee (celery grated salad),filet de lieu au curry (white fish filet in curry sauce), Pommes vapeur (steamed potatoes), Haricots beurree et persillees(beans in butter and parsley),Emmental cheese,Apple, Cafe.
Wednesday lunchtime: Potage de legumes (Vegetable soup), Escalope de porc au jus (pork scallop in gravy), carottes a l'oignon (cooked carrots with onions),Cottage cheese, Fruit, Cafe.
Thursday Lunchtime: Potage sans feculants (soup without starch),Colin sauce Bercy (filet of colin sauce bercy),Salsifis puree au beurre(salsifis puree and buttered),Yaourt naturel(joghourt natural),compote de pommes (apple compote), Cafe.
Friday lunchtime:Potage des legumes (vegetable soup),Filet de colin sauce estragon(filet of colin with tarragon sauce), Cream cheese, Cafe.
Saturday lunchtime: Soupe du jour(soup of the day),Dinde mixe sce provencale (Turkey pieces in provencale sauce),Haricots beurree (buttered haricot beans),Chocolat flan (chocolate cream without sugar),Compote de poire (pear compote), Cafe.
Sunday lunchtime:Soupe des legumes (Veg soup), Roti poulet(roast chicken), pommes de terre au four (roast potatoes),poellee meridionale sautee(meditteranean vegetables fried), Cantal Cheese, Orange, Cafe.
Now-having read the above, who can tell me why it all looked the same? Apart from the orange, the colour scheme was constant - GREY! The taste schema was also the same - non existant!
It takes great skill and mental application to get it that way!
Needless to say, metre long sandwiches full of good things, were NOT served!
So - guess what I'm stuffing into me this weekend!!
weather at Vauvert, France
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