There is a shameful Sunday morning ritual in our house. I’m not proud of it. I feel racked with guilt about it in fact and yet, despite my best efforts and promises that next week will be different I find myself in the same moral dilemma come 11am.
And no, it doesn’t involved Mass or any dobbing rituals.
My guilt lies solely with the wilted lettuce and the browning spring onions in my fridge. They stare out at me, forlornly - brown and soggy, curled and decomposing - mocking me for my failed good intentions. On bad weeks, fuzzy tomatoes look at me or perhaps even a bendy carrot long having lost its crunch.
Yes, I’m one of those bad people who - as Tesco have revealed - succumb to food waste. So each Sunday before the ritual torture of my weekly shop begins, I clear the cupboards and fridge of things long past their best so that I can go and buy fresher alternatives which will, in all likelihood, succumb to the same sad fate.
I know - of course I know - that this is a sin before God. I have heard it all before. There are children starving in Africa. There are wains going hungry in the world. Rickets is on the way back in. I know - but my intentions are always good.
I meal plan. I plot healthy, satisfying meals for me and my brood. I vow that this is the week the world will give me my wonder-woman-super-mammy-queen-bee sticker. Recipes in my many recipe books are earmarked. Post-It notes are plastered on the appropriate dishes. Salad and/or fresh veg will be served with every meal. Bar none.
We shall all, come Saturday evening, be glowing with nutritional health and my fridge shall be pleasantly barren as I skip off to Tesco once again.
The truth is, that doesn’t always happen. Sunday evening is usually okay. Monday limps about fine. By Tuesday I’m wondering if my mammy would have us over for dinner (I do this purely so she maintains contact with her grandchildren and not because the laziness is upon me, you understand.)
Somewhere between Wednesday and Friday I will revert to baked beans and jacket potatoes as an easy dinner and by Saturday I try to force-feed us as much salad and veg as possible to take the bad look off us.
And still, there always seems to be a bunch of spring onions and a lettuce (partially eaten) left behind.
Food waste of course is no laughing matter, so this mammy vows to try harder and plan better.