I spent an entire day watching basketball yesterday at the Jacksonville Veterans Memorial Arena, which is a fun event. But it's tough to be a celiac at an event like that.
Yes, there are a couple of snack items available at the arena, but nothing gluten free that you can eat for a meal. The problem is, this was a 12-hour day from the time I left home until the fourth game of the day ended, so I had to have a meal somewhere.
Besides the arena concessions, there was something of a festival in the street with a bunch of food trucks, and they opened up the baseball park across the street with a couple of concession stands. I looked at the menus on each of the food trucks and saw food that might be gluten free, but there was no way to know for sure, and the lines were too long for me to try and have a conversation with the truck workers.
My solution, and I think the only solution, was to bring my own food. I brought along a Go Picnic box as my dinner. If you're not familiar with Go Picnic, it's designed as a small meal you can carry along with you anywhere, and many of their meals are gluten free.
According to the arena's website, you're not allowed to bring food inside, unless you have a food allergy. Interestingly, when I got to the entrance, there was a sign that said no food allowed, but didn't list the exception.
Sure enough, a guy checking into bags at the door was ready to confiscate my food. I told him that the arena website says you can bring in your own food if you have an allergy, and I have celiac disease which means I can't eat gluten so I was bringing in my own gluten-free food, etc.
I've seen blank looks on people's faces before when I brought up gluten, but this may have been the most blank look I've ever seen. Fortunately, he seemed to decide he didn't want to hear anymore and just waved me in before I even finished talking.
So I ate my Go Picnic meal, which wasn't bad, but unfortunately wasn't really all that filling.
There was some great basketball yesterday, but I was pretty much feeling hungry all day. Sigh....the life of a celiac (yes, I will whine once in a while).