After 11 days of eating only food obtained from Triangle Farmers’ Markets, I finally cheated. It was a deliberate decision I made on Day 11, when my boyfriend and I decided that we were going to road trip to Carowinds in Charlotte, NC, to celebrate our nation’s birthday by riding roller coasters.

Sure, I could’ve packed a Farmers’ Market lunch in a cooler and joined the families picnicking on the patches of lawn surrounding Carowinds’ parking lot. Heck I spent Day 11 at the Festival for the Eno in Durham, where I packed a tomato and cheese sandwich so I wouldn’t be tempted by the funnel cake batter and grease wafting through the park.

My boyfriend fakes a nap for the camera on the Intimidator at Carowinds.

But for Day 12 — the Fourth of July — I ate a piece of pizza, French fries, Dippin’ Dots and drank several Cokes at Carowinds. It was disgustingly delicious, overpriced arcade food. Prior to Day 12 I had not cheated once — not a single morsel of nonmarket food entered my body — and I haven’t caved since.

It gets worse. On the way home I ate some Doritos and then we stopped in Greensboro at Olive Garden, where I had pasta, bread sticks and salad.

On the bright side, I think this intentional slip helped give me enough will power for the home stretch. And it helped put my Farmers’ Market budget in perspective (my pizza slice, fries and a large Coke cost me $18 at Carowinds). I’m back on my market diet though, so stick with me for these final 16 days. And if you want to ditch my blog because of my slip, I totally understand. But just know I’m still committed to this project. It’s been incredibly difficult, but I’m trying hard to stay true to my quest.