Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Invoking Zevon again

I've found religion again -- at least when it comes to what I drink. After much consideration and not a little consternation in trying to find somewhere to recycle cans and bottles here, I have decided to quit soda and caffeine.

Yes, again. There seems to be a pattern emerging: move somewhere new, get stressed out over the move and the settling-in process, lapse into bad habits (i.e. waking up 1-2 hours before my shift and/or drinking soda again), get annoyed with myself for said lapses, lather/rinse/repeat. So far I have two days back on the wagon and have yet to experience any of the usual side effects -- no headaches, and I'm no grumpier than usual.

What with the desert being a short drive away and all, drinking more water is obviously on the cards. A door-to-door salesman came by yesterday peddling water delivery service, much like what I had in Jakarta and Beijing, but tap water does fine for me. I've been drinking it for about two months now and have yet to keel over sick and/or dead.

Still, I want something for a change of pace. Coffee doesn't do it for me, and I just can't get into tea. Fruit juice (no concentrate, no added sugar) is good, but the extra calories mean it's only an occasional substitute. My new pursuit: ginger beer.

I first discovered ginger beer while on my whirlwind tour of New Zealand. George Hrab -- a fellow teetotaler -- mentioned how much he enjoyed Bundaberg ginger beer, so I made to sure to seek it out when I landed in Mordor-ville. When I tried it, the experience was, in a word, revelatory. Fizzy, gingery, non-alcoholic goodness.

Unfortunately, despite the wide variety of imported drinks on offer here in the AUH, I have yet to find anywhere that sells Bundaberg. Finicky as it sounds, none of the other varieties I've sampled so far live up to the original. Maybe it's because most of them come in cans instead of a snub-nosed brown bottle, or maybe it's because none of them have big bits of ginger sitting at the bottom. Maybe it's just nostalgia clouding my taste buds. My search for Bundaberg ginger beer here will continue, but in the meantime, I'll just keep looking for the next-best thing.

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