My family has constantly teased me abut being a horder, when it comes to food. My pantry at home resembles a fully stocked Gourmet section of Waitrose (upmarket UK supermarket). I think I must have been starving in a previous life, or had an experience that left me with a fear of never having enough food to feed the family, I really don’t know, but I’ve never been able to bear having an empty, or even poorly stocked larder, ”Mother Hubbard” is someone I could NEVER be compared to.
Whatever it is/was that caused me to be the way I am, I’ve always been able to produce a delicious meal to feed two to twenty people at a moments notice. I never run out of anything because I always have back ups and keep my pantry, fridge & freezer fully stocked.
I don’t think of myself as a food horder, I’m just well prepared. However, this pattern had to be slightly readjusted when I moved onboard Daisy, obviously the storage space was one hundred times less than in any of my previous houses. But I didn’t let that slow me down, when I had to provision for three people for a month at sea, also to allow for the fact that I would only be able to buy minimal basics in the Islands, at least until we reached Tahiti, which would possibly be three to four months away, I was prepared to do a monster shop, and I did.
Daisy’s third cabin was empty, so I would be able to store all the extra (dried/canned) provisions in there, the two bunk beds would make excellent storage shelves. My crazy, seven hour shopping trip to the big supermarket in Panama before we left, was the Mother of all shopping trips, even for me! Bob and I managed to fill seven enormous shopping carts/trollies to overflowing. Bob was seriously worried that I had miscalculated how many and for how long I was provisioning.
However, six weeks later and (thanks to my fantastic vacuum pack system) we are still eating well, and haven’t wasted anything. I have only had to buy a few fresh vegetables, fruit, eggs and a couple of basics like toilet paper and washing up liquid since we arrived. My provisioning is holding up really well. Bob openly admitted that I had done an awesome task of provisioning for a long trip.
I put hours into drawing up lists of menus, for special dinners, emergency meals, luxury food items and super-foods (impossible to get in the Islands) together, and so far it’s proved flawless. There are so many things you simply cant get here in the middle of the Pacific, and while I love fish, I didn’t want to live on fish and bananas for the next three months.
So many products that are easily available when you live on land, are simply not available in the Islands, knowing what they are, helped me plan well. I’m considering adding a “long passage provisioning list” in my next book. And as we continue our adventure through the Islands I will be able to add or delete items as I discover what is readily available. I was quite surprised to find Chia seeds for sale here, I didn’t expect to find any super foods, so it was a pleasant surprise. My provisioning list caters for a mostly Vegetarian diet.