Food V. Drink Back ten years ago, when I was backpacking my way across Europe, my priorities were very straightforward. I wanted a cheap bed in a central location near all the sightseeing locations, and I wanted easy access to copious amounts of alcohol. If I was feeling particularly adventurous, I'd try to drink an appropriate alcohol to where I was (grappa in Athens, Raki in Turkey, wine in France, etc), but I wasn't picky. To be drunk for cheap, ahh, that was the thing.
Now that I'm a real adult, rather than a kid just out of college pretending to be an adult, things have changed. I've been planning a trip to Raleigh-Durham for the Thanksgiving weekend, and just yesterday I realized that the only trip planning that I'd been doing has been food related. I know what BBQ places I'm interested in going to, where the top ten nearest Chick-Fil-As are to our hotel, and two or three of the best rated restaurants in the Triangle are located. We're only going to be there for five days, total, but I have at least ten restaurants on the list. Only yesterday did I start to look at what else there might be to do in the areas.
It's a definite switch from the days when my biggest concern was whether I'd be stuck in an HI hostel, which has curfews and doesn't allow drinking on their grounds, or when my biggest problems were a full bottle of wine and a broken corkscrew.
In fact, my Raleigh-Durham trip issues are a good reflection of my day-to-day life, it turns out. I'm writing this at 12:29pm at work, which is during the two hour period before lunch at 1pm whenI start to think about what I'm going to do for lunch, culminating in my actually going to lunch. It's all very dramatic. I'm not sure when in my life the amount of money I spend on food wound up surpassing the amount of money I spend on booze, but that pivot point in retrospect probably is as good as any at marking when I finally turned into an adult.
Of course, it also probably marks me as a foodie, which I admit probably makes me insufferable to be around to many people. The Stu who spent his 20s drunk in a hostel would likely beat me to death with a bottle of good scotch.