I have absolutely no idea how people manage to live on the breadline. It doesn’t seem so much like living to me as surviving; paddling furiously to stay afloat when you’d really rather just give up as it’s easier and requires less energy. I’ve been at the mercy of my stomach all week: lethargic, hungry between meals, frustrated, annoyed, irritable. I’ve had moments when the Breadline Challenge has felt like a game – a bit like the round on Masterchef when the chefs are given scraps to cook with. I’ve quite enjoyed that need to be creative and to figure out how to make the best out of what I’ve got to hand. But that’s about where the enjoyment of this week has stopped.
Here’s what was on the menu for day 5:
Breakfast: Porridge with grated apple
Lunch: Hummus, carrot sticks and a pitta bread. Raw carrots are surprisingly filling; I think it’s all the crunching you have to do! My 1kg bag for 57p has gone really far, as even after my soup that lasted 3 meals and today’s lunch, there are still plenty left… But I’m pretty bored of them!
Dinner: Spanish omelette (3 eggs, 4 small potatoes, quarter of an onion & a couple of tablespoons of sweetcorn) and sofrito (half a red pepper, half a tin of tomatoes & a chilli). I felt a bit reckless using 3 eggs in one go, but I wanted to make something I would enjoy eating – and I did! I’d never actually made a Spanish omelette before today.
Snacks: Half a packet of instant noodles
I guess with just the weekend to get through now I should feel like there’s light at the end of the tunnel, but somehow I don’t… I totally underestimated the mental strain of the living on such a small food budget.