Sunday, 23 August 2009

New neighbour and his dog + my latest food fad

Although there hasn't yet been a repetition of that dreadful experience of my new downstairs neighbour's first night there are occasionally still disturbingly loud thumpings and bangings coming from his flat. However last night was also rather disruptive. I was awoken at 1 a.m. by his TV or radio at loud volume - it seemed to be some programme about The Rolling Stones' (a DVD of 'Shine a Light'?). He turned it off about 45 minutes later though I was left wide awake for at least a further hour. I fear that this might turn out to be regular disruptive behaviour on his part. A couple of days ago as I went out, having to pass his flat, his door was left wide open (hardly any furniture, the floor strewn with bits and pieces) his dog came out to greet me, tail wagging, jaw slack in 'smiley' fashion. It's a big, handsome beauty which allowed me to stroke it. But in the four days it's been here I still haven't heard an audible peep from it - certainly no barking and no whining either. I can't help wondering if the poor thing has been 'de-barked'. There's no discernible sign of it being mistreated, thank heavens. When I see him taking it out it holds its head up, tail erect, with no appearance of cowering in his company. And so far my own pussies have successfully managed to avoid it though I suppose a confrontation sometime is inevitable. Anyway I still haven't exchanged a word with the guy though it's only a matter of time before I'll bump into him when I'm going out or returning. So, my apprehension about what the future holds between us is undiminished.
About a week ago I decided I'd really like to take a further step on my road from vegetarianism to veganism, at least while I've still got the time to do it. So I started buying soya milk instead of cows', though I still have to get the latter for my cats - they won't go anywhere near the other. It's taking me some time to get used to it. That caramel-like taste was initially quite off-putting but slightly less so now. I do appreciate how carnivorous humans can be irritated by the presence of or just hearing from veggies/vegans. The latter can seem to be preachy just by their conspicuously different food intake - with a condescending unvoiced air of superiority. But although I hope I'd never try to talk others into changing their own behaviour to accord with mine, my zoophilic conscience has been nagging me all my life and I feel a bit more at ease now that I'm moving in the right direction for me. The question is "Will this soya-milk phase last?" However, getting weaned off eggs (my favourite food of all, together with potatoes, tomatoes and cauliflower) is going to even more problematic. I have been eating only 'free-range' for decades - but, to be truthful, I'm not quite sure why one should deprive oneself of a natural product, when, as far as I can see, as long as the eggs are unfertilised, there has been no animal suffering involved. But no doubt someone will tell me that hens shouldn't be reared just to produce eggs and then be slaughtered at the end of their egg-producing lives. Meantime my conscience in that respect I oh-so-conveniently put on hold.


  1. Hi Ray. I can tell you about my experience with soy milk. Greg's parents turned us on to it about 4 years ago. Greg's dad is a little lactose intolerant, as am I. Cow's milk gives both of us problems down below. Soy milk eliminated that problem for us entirely. Greg drinks it even though he doesn't need to.

    We use it as a direct cow's milk substitute. We put it on our breakfast cereal and we cook with it. Here in the U.S. it is sold in several flavors. We just buy the plain, light version. I rather like it and would be happy to drink it even if I didn't need to.

  2. Very interesting, Larry. I myself have never had a problem with cows' milk or, so far after just a few days, soya milk. But it's taking a little longer than I expected to get used to the caramel-like smell and taste. It's still so unexpected it really hits me in the face every time. Did you experience this same initial 'distaste' when you started using it? Not that I find caramel itself unpleasant. It's just that now it's turning up in food I wouldn't otherwise have expected it to - after I've put it there myself, of course. I've not yet seen it here in different flavours - only 'plain' and 'half-fat'. A choice of flavours might make things easier for me. But I've no intention on giving up on the 'campaign' - yet.

  3. No, I had no initial distaste. The thought of drinking something made from a bean was kind of weird, but then I just needed to remind myself that coffee is also made from a bean, so I got over that problem fast.

    When you refer to the caramel-like smell and taste, I have no idea what you mean. The soy milk here is darkish white (a caramel color?) and odorless and nearly tasteless. The brand we buy here is called "Silk".

  4. The colour is the same as your describe - but it does have its own individual taste. ('Caramel' is as as close as I can get.) It's certainly far from being 'nearly tasteless and odourless'. The brand I use is called 'So Good'. Think I'll try the half-fat variety as well as looking around for other brands. But I must say that I DO sense I'm getting used to it now so if there was a problem it seems to be lessening. Thanks for your help and the info anyway, Larry. Much appreciated.