I have returned to working in an office during the week. This has put a serious damper on lunch for me. Certainly I can head out with the millions of other office workers to various establishments and get lunch. However, I feel it is nearly impossible to grab a satisfactory lunch out. Typically when I go out to lunch with co-workers (minus the time I worked near Craft) I usually wish I had saved the money. And when the food is actually good it makes me want to crawl under my desk for an afternoon siesta rather than jump back into the thick.
The other option is to bring my lunch, which is my usual inclination. But this is where the misery also comes in. Why misery? Here’s why…
1. Packing lunches
Sure packing your lunch for Monday may not be difficult after resting up all weekend but what about every other day of the week? I either do it while preparing dinner, which is tough. How can I know what I will be in the mood to eat 12 hours from now, when I haven’t even eaten dinner? And fatigue is the other factor. I worked all day, I barely want to put something together for dinner, little alone think about a meal for tomorrow.
2. Limited office kitchenettes
In almost every place I have worked, I have had access to a fridge and a microwave. If I was really lucky, there is also a toaster oven. And if I was super duper lucky all of the above appliances also work!
Usually these kitchenettes are tiny and/or double as a copy room/server room/office of the temp. Therefore, I am limited in the space I can take up to prepare my lunch and the time.
This limits my lunch options to sandwiches, frozen foods and various non-perishable foods. Which can be good but not every day. Sometimes you want a fried egg or a grilled cheese sandwich.
3. Prying eyes of co-workers
I have found that people who seem to be non-judgmental will judge what you are eating for lunch.
I am not someone who needs to hide what I am eating but I also don’t always want to explain it either. Some days, especially toward the end of the week, I run out of something and have to make due. So sometimes I am making an open face chicken sandwich because there was but one piece of bread left when I went to pack my lunch. Sometimes I want to eat toast with avocado and a little sea salt. I do not like having to account for this. I am strange…leave me be!
I know there are a million guides and suggestions for the office lunch but I never enjoy lunch as much during the work week. I feel rushed for time, I feel stifled, and I feel uninspired.
My only solace is looking forward to dinner.