Melbourne gal Meet Me at Mikes has sewn the seed of creativity in her blog, and it grows and grows all across the interwebs. One particular seed sprouted a creative writing tree. Each branch on this tree is a different theme to be written about, in any old way you feel like writing. It’s all about the writing, see. I’m climbing the tree. This week’s branch/theme is School Lunches. Read the original School Lunch post here or sign up for this creative writing extravaganza here.

But first – munch on this:
They say you are what you eat.
From the age of 5 to 18, I was mostly white bread. Overly processed, mass produced and tasteless, I ‘rebelled’ against my parents, wore ‘alternative’ clothing and ironically thought myself highly individual. A product of middle class Australia and generation y, everyone else’s lunches always seemed better than mine.
But they also say don’t judge a book by its cover.
That means it’s what’s inside the white bread that counts, right? Starting with peanut butter, moving on to salami and graduating to baked ricotta and salad. A little bit mainstream, a little bit ethnic, a little bit hippy. Always a struggle to fit it all in one bite. Might leave a nasty aftertaste when all combined.

Mostly, it’s the thought that counts though, right?
That makes me guilty. Guilty for throwing away my lunch every day for approximately 3 years in primary school. Not because of a blossoming eating disorder, but because Mum (lovingly and kindly) made my lunch with frozen bread. So gross to eat cold soggy sandwiches. So gross to see a pile of mouldy green square blocks piled waist high in the storeroom I dumped them all in, in order not to get caught throwing my lunch in the bin…
The moral of the story?
My school lunches made me who I am today. From lunch orders in brown paper bags, to soggy sandwiches, to leftover pumpkin risotto, ultimately my school lunches expanded my mind and my waistline. Sometime you just gotta learn the hard way I guess. If it wasn’t for the power of homemade baked ricotta I would never have attended enough school days to finish my HSC. If it wasn’t for mould, and the foods I abandoned in order for it to grow on, I would never have been confronted with the ramifications of my laziness. We eat, live and learn.

Thankfully, no sandwiches were harmed in the making of this post. Today’s lunch was salad – balsamic beetroot and feta, lentil and tabouli with walnuts and chicken with spinach and pesto. And delicious. Today the only mould I grow is in my bathroom. I suspect there is hope for me yet.

Incidentally, I really love the colour mould.