Dear Bee, this is what happens when you go shopping hungry…

The is the situation:

You’re starving. Not literally, but your stomach never felt so empty.

It’s affecting everything, especially what’s going on in your head. All you can think about is food. What you could eat. What is available to eat. When you can eat.

It’s funny that whenever hunger strikes like this, the ordinary food won’t do. The cheese sandwich waiting merrily for you at the back of the fridge just won’t cut it, when it comes to giving your stomach the delicious treat it deserves.

Not to mention your tastebuds. What is it you fancy? Sweet? Savoury?

This was me this week, Bee. I was famished, and I was going shopping.

Mistake.

I know, I know, it’s a no-no. But I had to, this was my allotted food shop time and it was all I had.

When you’re hungry, everything is tempting. Everything looks good. It’s a miracle I didn’t buy the whole shop.

When you’re hungry, everything looks delicious. Even green pea pods that have been covered with a sour cream and chive flavouring, and baked. Look delicious. When you’re really hungry.

I haven’t actually tried them yet, but do I really need to? They are pea pods, the bit that is rejected when the peas have been ousted and frozen in all their green roundness. The pod is the bit that is stringy and earthy; the bit that tastes like really.strong.peas. The bit that gets put on the compost heap.

When you’re hungry, you think “Yeah, I’ll be adventurous, I’ll try something new,” so they go in the trolley.

When you’re not hungry, reality strikes and you wonder what you were thinking.

What is it you’re hungry for, Bee?

We all have appetites. Not just for food, either. We all get hungry for love, affirmation, affection, achievement…and when we’re hungry, everything looks good.

Getting top marks in all your exams…having a wink and a well done from your favourite teacher…letting a boy go further than you really want him to (but he loves you, doesn’t he?)…when you’re hungry, everything looks good.

But what about when you’re not hungry? When that appetite is not as urgent as it once was? The reality of the pea snacks strike, and you’re left with the eternal question: what was I thinking?

So, Bee, be careful when you go shopping. Time it wisely, use some discernment and select carefully from what’s available. Consider the long term consequences and make sure you don’t choose something that’s going to end up being a source of embarrassment and just lurk in the back of your cupboard forever. That’s a waste of money.

Think about whether the top flight results, or the hours of study, or the fumble in the dark are going to satisfy you in the way you really need them to. Because if they’re going to end up being a source of embarrassment, or stress, or sadness, that would just be a waste of you.

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