Over the weekend I flew to Calgary for the wedding of one of my childhood besties. It was a quick trip, only a 1-hour flight, and all the celebrations were a ton of fun. On Sunday morning my mum and I were up at 6 and on our way to the airport to catch our flights back home, mine to Vancouver and hers to Windsor. Because both of us would rather be crazy early than late, we cleared security by about 7:30am and were sitting in the lounge, waiting for her flight to board at 9:05.
When that time came, we went our separate ways. My flight was to board at 10:20, so the plan was to do a bit of blog work on my computer, board, have a quick snooze on the plane, and thanks to the 1-hour time difference, be home sweet home by lunch time.
Apparently the travel gods had a different plan. Remember how I said that the biggest lesson I learned during my year of being 26 was patience? Well I think it’s safe to say that airports are one of the best environments to test one’s patience.
About 10 minutes before boarding was supposed to start, I packed up my laptop, went to refill my water bottle, then returned to the gate. I’d just had an incredibly productive hour of work and planned to pick right back up as soon as I got home. I’d been crafting some new recipes and figured I’d spend the afternoon making, photographing, and perfecting them. But then I saw one of WestJet’s agents walk up to the microphone at the gate with a slightly concerning look on her face.
“Ladies and gentlemen, unfortunately the flight, WestJet 447 to Vancouver has been cancelled due to mechanical problems. If Vancouver is your final destination and you are not making a connection, please go to the baggage claim area, pick up your checked luggage and head to the departure desks. You’ll need to get new boarding passes and bag tags for the next available flight.”
Interestingly (and rather annoyingly), this was the 3rd trip in a row where my flight has been delayed or cancelled. Now, before you go thinking I’m making a minor delay sound like a major trauma, just know that I 100% realize we’re talking first world problems here. This delayed flight was nothing when you consider what could have happened, but still, we’ve all been there when it comes to frustrating airport situations, right?
I was very conscious of this as I walked (which in retrospect, was probably more of an angry march) back down to the luggage carousel. “There’s zero point in stressing out about something you can’t control” said sophisticated me to impatient me… but let’s be real – that’s a lot easier said than done!
After completing my second lap through the check-in desk, bag drop and security, I set up camp at Starbucks. With 5 hours of time to kill (and you can bet I was sooooooo glad I got up at 6am for all this), it was back to blog work, emails, e-book revamping (if you haven’t got my free one yet, you can grab the new and improved copy by subscribing to Eat Spin Run Repeat), and perusing magazines in the shops. All I can say is thank freaking goodness my laptop charger was in my hand luggage or those 5 hours would have felt much longer!
I don’t know about you, but when I’m reading magazines in the airport (or anywhere for that matter), I always gravitate towards the health and fitness ones. They inspire me to get straight back into my clean-living routine as soon as I get back home. They make me want to do all the workouts, cook all the healthy recipes, stand instead of sit, get outside into the fresh air, and get plenty of quality sleep in a nice dark, quiet room. But the real cruelty of it all is that you can’t – at least not right away – because you’re STUCK IN THE AIRPORT.
Eventually it was 3pm and time to board again – for real. Thankfully everything from that point went smoothly. Having been on a weird meal schedule all weekend, by the time I got home, I had a major craving for a very veggie-heavy meal. I’ve yet to find an airport that has a really solid salad game, and that’s exactly what was on my mind as I wheeled my suitcase into my condo and dropped my jacket on the floor. Allllllllllll the vegetables!
I realize that this Mango Curried Cucumber Noodle Salad is a little summery for this time of year, but I’ve been wanting to share it since it was first created in my kitchen a couple of weeks ago. If you’re feeling a little sluggish, in need of a re-boot, or just want to enjoy a meal that’s chock-full of nutritional goodness, give this one a go. And if you’re looking to make a swap for edamame, I’ve made this with chicken, salmon and tempeh, all with great results.
Mango Curried Cucumber Noodle Salad
Prep Time: 10 mins
Cook Time: 0 mins
Ingredients (1 serving)
For the sauce (you will have lots leftover):
- 1/2 mango, peeled
- 1/2 avocado, peeled and pitted
- 1/2 tsp ground turmeric
- 1/2 tsp curry powder
- pinch of cayenne pepper
- 2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 1/3 cup water
For the salad:
- 1 English cucumber, spiralized
- 1 carrot, peeled and julienne cut
- 1/2 cup defrosted shelled edamame
- 2-3 very thin slices of red onion
- 3 tbsp raw organic cashews
- 2 tbsp dried cranberries
- 2 tbsp very finely minced parsley
In a Vitamix or other high-powered blender or food processor, puree all ingredients for the dressing. Add water to thin as needed. Pour it into a jar with a lid so you can store leftovers in the fridge.
Spiralize the cucumber. (This is the spiralizer I’ve had since 2012 and it’s fantastic.) If you don’t have a spiralizer, a julienne peeler can also be used.
In a large bowl, toss the spiralized cucumber all remaining ingredients in a few tablespoons of dressing.
Let everything sit for a few minutes so the flavours can intensify, then plate the salad and serve.
[Tweet “Lunchtime inspiration: Mango Curried Cucumber Noodle Salad #recipe”]
Oh, and in case you wondered, yes I have PLENTY of fall dishes coming your way soon. Start stocking up on pumpkin and butternut squash – in a couple of weeks you’ll be very glad you did! ?
So tell me…
- What’s your best (or most frustrating) airport story?
- If you’re a magazine browser in airports like me, what do you read?