Atlanta – US trip pt.2

Pt. 2 of my US trip story. I thought that it would be good to tell something about the purpose of the trip.

I haven’t mentioned here what I do in my life, apart from cooking vegan stuff. So maybe some of you will be surprised to hear that I’m a PhD student and I do some Mathematics and Theoretical Computer Science. Nice combination, isn’t it? Thanks to my studies, I could have gone to USA. The main purpose of my trip was a conference on Random Structures and Algorithms in Atlanta. I spent there a wonderful week with great people from all over the world. I had a chance to visit Emory University Campus and see how does it look like to be an American student.

I learned that American campuses differ from the regular ‘American landscape’. Students are usually fit, many people run, many ride bikes. I was amazed by the number of people I saw running on the streets each day, and I don’t mean only Emory. There are so many runners everywhere! In my hometown (a not too big city in north-east Poland) every time I go running I see surprised looks, as if I was doing something odd. The situation is better in bigger cities such as Kraków or Poznań, but still I think that running is not our strength. I should write something more on that topic one day.

Apart from that, everywhere you can find recycle bins. It seems that Emory is a pro-ecological place.

Now it’s time to write something about food. As I mentioned in the previous post, I was afraid that I won’t find any vegan food. Fortunately, I survived and I feel good. The conference organizers provided breakfast and each day we had the same stuff – bagels and muffins. Bagels are quite popular in USA. They resemble Cracovian pretzels, but they are more ‘clayey’. I was a bit concerned that they might not be vegan, but when I checked the ingredients everything seemed fine. But I should point out that Americans tend to stuff food with vitamins and minerals. There is usually information about how much iron or vitamin A there is in the product and also recommended daily allowance, but I guess it’s not to inform you how much you must get but what amount you shouldn’t exceed. At least I got such an impression.

After large breakfast came the lunch. Usually I chose the campus cafeteria, where, aside from pizza, burgers, Mexican food, ice cream, smoothie, cookies and other fast foods, you could get a lot of vegetables. Because it was extremely hot then, I usually ate different salads. The system is easy – you choose the size of a plate or container, load it with food and then pay for it. The price depends on size and kind of food. And there is a lot of different things to choose: few kinds of salads, tomatoes, cucumber, red onion, fresh peas, kidney beans, chickpeas, broccoli, croutons, many dressings, fruit salad and usually one other salad, for example with pasta and olives. A perfect summer lunch. They also served some vegetarian dishes like tofu in spicy sauce. I also tried sushi with brown rice.

And here are some examples:

  1. High protein chocolate bar with almonds
  2. Bruschetta with white beans dip
  3. Sushi with brwon rice
  4. Avocado salad
  5. Fruit salad
  6. Bruschetta with mushrooms
  7. Bagles
  8. Salad mix 1
  9. Salad mix 2

We usually had dinner in the city. Once I had a chance to try tree kinds of hummus with homemade pita. I guess hummus is very popular in USA because you can get it almost everywhere – in restaurants and supermarkets. I’m so jealous!

The conference organizers also threw a party where there were other delicious vegan goodies. Unfortunately, I was unable to make photos all the time, so I can’t show you many delicious things I had.

Finally, one more photo, this time it’s me :).