I have been on holiday in the Lake District and have had no internet reception at all. So I will give a quick update on how the gluten free challenge went over the last week or so. Holidaying gluten free has definitely been the hardest part of the challenge so far. I found myself barred from So many greatly anticipated seaside experiences. I was even unable to engage in the traditional seaside ritual of tucking in to fish and chips on a windy beach. Luckily we were staying in a chalet and so I had a complete kitchen at my disposal. I had packed a selection of my favorite gluten free goodies in preparation. Although for the first few days I did enjoy my food, having to prepare my meals separately from my friends started to make feel rather isolated. The enjoyment of good food is something to be shared and my gluten free diet was beginning to feel divisive and alienating. I decided to nip this feeling in the bud hastily by involving my friends in my new gluten free lifestyle and sharing my bag of gluten free treats with them all. They were all too happy to munch into my gluten free crisps over a movie. I rustled up some scrumptious pasta served with some gorgeous local bacon for dinner which they loved. I even woke up extra early one morning to make some scrumptious gluten free pancakes. I mixed banana through some of the batter to make them extra sweet. After a little exploring through the many scenic villages scattered throughout the Lake District, I soon discovered that many small cafes were serving gluten free options. It struck me then how quickly awareness about gluten free food has spread. A few years ago when I last visited the area I can’t imagine that there were many gluten free options available at all. I was able to sit besides my friends in cafes, and tuck into gluten free banana bread, Victoria sponge cake and even an English scone. I can’t lie and say that the gluten free trip was easy. Luckily I was holidaying in the UK; luckily I had a kitchen at my disposal. If I were staying in a hotel or overseas I think this may have been near impossible. Certainly this experience has reminded of me of the joy that is found in sharing good food with good friends. When your diet is restricted in any way it can be hard to recapture those opportunities or share in those moments. I managed to find a loop hole by turning chef and cooking delicious gluten free food for everyone. My friends seemed to enjoy it as much as I did.