I always intended this website to be about the daily experiences that affect, as well as reflect, my life as a vegan. My hope, almost a year later, still is to let people know that life as a vegan can be a little confusing, confounding, but well worth doing-well worth living. Standing on a pillar and pontificating is just not my style. Even though I understand and am saddened by the urgency of the matter, I still believe that the best way to convince people  is to give them the facts, make these facts relate-able  and show kindness and compassion in my approach.

Morning Coffee
Morning Coffee

And because this website is about my daily life, I wanted to post every other day or so. That goal has proven to be problematic and many of the issues I wish to address have fallen by the wayside. In other words, daily life and commitments  often get in the way of sharing said daily life. This bothers me and I continually look for ways of re arranging things so that I have more time. So, here I am on Saturday morning, with a coffee in hand, getting back on track- for the nonhuman animals who are always in my thoughts.

Mom and Sal
Mom and Sal

I am just back from a road trip, a sort of family pilgrimage. I returned to a place that holds many painful memories for me- a family homestead, as it were. Now, I am not in the habit of inflicting painful memories on my myself if I can avoid it. But there are people there, family members, who I had promised to see-people I wanted to see. And, I wanted to visit the family cemetery to place a red rose on the plaque that marks the beginning and the end of my mother’s life. It has been four and a half years since she left my life and it is still oh so tough to be without her.

 The good news is that I spent a lovely afternoon with my aunt and uncle who filled me in on all the latest family news, remembered the good old days and offered me a lovely plant based supper to boot. Now, they are not vegan and in fact are part of a farming community that is not plant based, but they showed me a great deal of respect in asking me how I became vegan and did not once refute my reasons. My aunt was concerned about protein and I was happy to share with her all that I have learned about small amount of protein we actually need in our daily diets and that the best place to get it is in plants.

Plant Based Pasta
Plant Based Pasta
Plant Based Breakfast
Plant Based Breakfast

I wondered about what I would find to eat while tootling down the 401 and staying in hotels in Toronto and environs, but it turned out not to be a problem. The biggest thing I noticed  when ordering food, is I no longer get that puzzled,” I don’t know what you are asking me” look. I tell servers that, ” I am vegan and that means that I do not eat any meat, fish, egg and dairy. This includes meat and fish broths and sauces and milk powders.”. When they offer a pasta dish, I make sure there is no egg in the pasta and reply politely, if they ask,  that, “No, I am not allergic to eggs. I do not eat them for ethical reasons.”. Feel free, if you wish, to use my little speech when you are ordering food. I find that it gets my point across and often invites a healthy discussion with the server.

 The first thing I do when I am visiting is check The Happy Cow for possible places to eat. They listed only one plant based  business in the area so, I did a search on Google and found this interesting place. – an organic, vegan catering establishment  in  Chatham in the heart of southern Ontario. I was happy to visit them and purchased a delicious Quinoa Salad and a raw cake made from carrots, dates, raisins and nuts. I asked and was told that they have been in business for a year and was given some free cookies as a first time client. The business is called the Hungry Vegan and I invite you to look them up if you are in the area. Sorry, no pictures, once again. Picture taking is on my Must Improve List.

November 08 4
Me in My Car

My necessary stops at the On Route Service Stations on the 401 yielded a few choices, salads and fruit cups mostly, but hey, I love fruits and veggies, so this is not a punishment. What I noticed most about  these fast food joints, like Burger King, McDonalds and Kentucky Fried Chicken was that the majority of the patrons were ordering and eating unhealthy food of cruel origins. They were eating in  a disconnected and distracted way-chowing down without a thought for the plight of nonhumans caught in our abhorrent and ultra cruel industries. Perhaps they were thinking about the next part of the journey, or perhaps  about their own lives.  I have to tell you that this sight made me very sad. I look forward to the day when everyone is ordering ethical, one hundred percent whole food plant based meals. I look forward to the peaceful energy I will see reflected on their faces.

Annie’s Vegan View

Sometimes, things that are hard to do, are just hard.

Sometimes, there is a silver lining in the form of  a connection made or re-established.

Life affirming actions like choosing kindness and compassion are never lost.

Be life affirming and choose veganism, for the sake of those who suffer at our hands.

You will find that this is one of the least hard things you do in your life, both figuratively and practically.

May all beings be happy and free.

Anne
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This Vegan’s Website and Road Trip

8 thoughts on “This Vegan’s Website and Road Trip

  • November 9, 2014 at 10:54 pm
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    Thanks again for sharing your thoughts. I am not vegan but you have definitely made me stop and think….again. I feel for me it will be a journey but I will get there…sooner or later but I will get there.

    Reply
  • November 10, 2014 at 9:16 am
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    Hi Judy,
    My goodness, now you have made me stop and think. You are the first person who has told me that my words and ideas have affected the way they think about veganism and how it relates to him/her. Thanks for that. I am glad that my website appeals to all-vegans and non alike.
    I keep saying over and over that my goal is not to preach, while believing with everything that I have that choosing vegan is so necessary. I believe this first and foremost for every living being on this earth.
    I am reminded of this quote by Lao Tzu. “The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step”. Once we stop consuming nonhumans, taking the “one step” in one fell swoop, the rest falls into place. The door is open to kindness and compassion and the learning begins. I encourage you to take this step in one fell swoop.
    The World Peace Diet by Dr. Will Tuttle is a great resource. I learned all about our herding culture and the domination of all species, particularly females, and how these practices led to our deeply embedded traditions which support all the cruel industries we have in the world today.
    I believe that veganism is not about us or for us, but it does benefit us.
    Many thanks for caring,
    Anne

    Reply
  • November 13, 2014 at 5:34 am
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    Had tears in my eyes at the end of this one. It really is difficult to look around with open eyes at what goes on around us all day every day without being overcome by emotion. Some days I’m better at it that others.

    It’s nice to read that your aunt and uncle did their best to make you comfortable. I don’t see my family because we live on different continents, but I’m the only vegan and, well it’s a long boring story. I have one brother and one niece who I think may one day on their own come to being vegan. It’s been strange for me to contemplate my family history since I became vegan. My mother’s paternal side was all farmers, still are. My father’s maternal side were all butchers until his mother was born and she became a nurse (she was an only child). Before I ramble on though…

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts and experiences. I don’t know how anyone could ever blog every day, but I know some people do. … The carrot cake sounds so yummy, btw! 🙂

    Reply
    • November 13, 2014 at 5:38 am
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      I am so sorry…. I meant to write that I’m sorry that you lost your dear mother and that the photo of her and her dog is nice. A text message came through while I was writing, but that’s no excuse. I’m glad you were able to leave the rose for her.

      Reply
      • November 13, 2014 at 8:01 am
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        Hi Krissa,
        Thanks and no worries. I talk about my Mom because, although she was not vegan, she had an extraordinary understanding of love and commitment which I feel are two of the cornerstones of veganism.
        My mom’s dog Sal was a great gal. I still miss her.
        Anne

        Reply
    • November 13, 2014 at 7:55 am
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      Hi Krissa,
      I understand how you feel, because I often feel that way myself. I try to remind myself that the path I am on today is kinder, more compassionate and honest than the path I was on before I became vegan.

      I struggle with knowing whether or not I am being effective enough in my advocacy. Are people able to connect with my writing? Do non vegans look at my website and re-consider their choices? Am I doing enough today to save the dignity and the life of a nonhuman being who is acught in our cruel industries?

      I am lucky to have my daughter in my life, because she is the person who led me to veganism. Families can be complicated. I am happy to hear that you have hope that your brother and niece may one day choose to be vegan!

      Thanks for reading my posts and for commenting. Everything we can do to get the word out is a plus.

      BTW, the carrot cake was good! Too bad Hungry Vegan is so far away or I might go back for another piece. Lol!

      Anne

      Reply
  • October 21, 2016 at 9:15 am
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    Hi Anne
    I am glad you enjoyed your trip and you were able to leave a red rose for your mum. It sounds like she made you into the compassionate and loving person that you are. Your Aunt and Uncle did a nice thing to respect your food choices and cater for you. It is always nice when people make the effort for us as vegans. I find myself taking my own food a lot when I visit other people who are not vegan and it feels a bit embarrassing sometimes.

    Let me reassure you that you are an effect advocate and are doing everything you can to help the animals. This website is amazing and I forget sometimes that non vegans will be reading it too and will maybe make the switch after reading some of your articles. Not everyone will leave a comment but that doesn’t mean that your articles won’t be having an effect on them. I love the way that you don’t preach and everything you say is said in a compassionate manner and in a way in which we can all relate.

    I too find it sad when I see people eating meat and dairy with a look of disconnect on their face but I remember that that was me once, before I knew the truth and it makes me feel a bit better, that there is hope for us all.

    By the way Anne. I love the Ford Anglia. I love classic cars.
    Thanks for sharing your story.

    Take care
    Rachel

    Reply
    • October 28, 2016 at 9:58 am
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      Hi Rachel,
      Thank you for the support. My mom was a big influence in my life and I shall always be thankful to her.
      Take care.
      Anne

      Reply

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