This idea hit me one morning as I sat at a national chain resaurant eating what I thought, at the time, would be an enjoyable breakfast. As my plate of  powdered eggs, previously frozen bacon,  matching sausage, and hash browns was sat on the table in front of me I realized that I had fallen into the trap that many people, who live in suburbia, commonly run into. Everyone eats at chain restaurants. You cannot resist it as they are everywhere. On every corner and in every store outlet there are Taco Bells, Denny’s, and the infamous McDonald’s all there hovering ominously and softly whispering, “eat here, you know you are hungry.”

Yes, sadly enough I had fallen prey to the same gimmicks as everyone around me who were more focused on other aspects of their life beside eating well. I began to question myself and all I ever knew of my foodie upbringing. Shocked, I began to wonder how it happened and what I could do to prevent it. I felt as though I has cheated on a long time lover. That was it! I could stop it and I could prevent it. I decided there, that moment, as I was spooning powdered eggs into my mouth, that I need to stay away, far away, from these very chain restaurants which caused so much temptation for ease.

So the notion of 30 days without chain food was created and initiated all in the same dining experience. This period without food would be beneficial for three reasons. 1) I could wean myself from my newly acquired eating habits of suburban life. 2) I could return to the very eating values which I have always sworn, eat well, eat fresh, eat local. 3) This would allow me to find new and possibly exciting restaurants in an area that I am still familiarizing myself with. 

I am currently 18 days into this culinary expedition. Since that day I have discovered about 10 new restaurants on top of cooking more at home which is always a plus. With those newly discovered restaurants, I have found an amazing and inexpensive Mexican restaurant within biking  distance of my house, I have found an awesome hamburger joint which is owned and operated by a former chef who worked under Wolfgang Puck, and the beachside bar and grill which serves the best fish tacos in San Diego (possibly the world). The amazing thing about each and every one of the restaurants that I have found is that they do not report to a corporate office, nor do they ship everything in from a warehouse to be defrosted and thrown in the microwave.

So, with all this said, I say to you… go out explore, support local businesses, restaurants, and purveyors. Treat yourself right by eating well, eating fresh, and eating local.