Sept. 11, 2020 | By Hank Bedingfield | Photo by Patil Khakhamian

As COVID-19 and a revolving door of quarantine mandates rage throughout campus, nearly everything has taken a bizarre twist. The food is no exception.

In neat containers of recycled cardboard and plastic, students across the campus now rely on pre-made meals, delivered every morning, to simply survive the day.

Although on-campus living will soon be reserved to a tiny population of students, many, still awaiting their removal from campus, find themselves living out a near dystopian reality with food-related freedom curtailed and sustenance predetermined.

“The food is essentially pre-made, limited options from the Benji’s grill with one or two changing daily options,” Mathias resident Ellie Derry ’23 told The Catalyst. “It’s not as good as what Rastall normally serves, and there aren’t many healthy options, but it’s alright given the circumstances.”

For some health-conscious students — who typically swarm around the ever-present vegan and vegetarian options of the once-mighty Rastall dining hall — the transition to delivered meals has not been seamless.

“I wish there were healthier options for food,” Derry said. “They consistently have burgers and fries from the grill, and a lot of the time, the daily options are mostly carbs and roasted vegetables.”

In addition to continued complaints over a lack of healthy options, some had issues with portions and food quantity, whether it be too little or too much.

“We usually don’t get a meal for breakfast,” said Mathias resident Cecelia Russell ’24. “The meals are good most of the time, but sometimes I don’t eat them even if I’m hungry. It is nice to have so many snacks, but almost all of them are unhealthy so I can’t really replace a meal with them.”

Russell’s roommate, Glorie Romero Elvir ’24, supplemented her meals with the food from a care package from her mother.

For those with dietary restrictions — celiac, vegetarian, or vegan — there is a “one size fits all” option to satisfy every single need in one plastic-wrapped package.

“For those with dietary restrictions, it is terrible,” wrote Camille Lewis ’24, who is celiac. “Any dietary restriction vegetarian, lactose intolerant, vegan, or gluten free is lumped into one meal. I find the combination meal of those restrictions to be very tough, and I certainly was not getting enough food being GF.”

For those stuck on campus, under the time-wrapping keel of quarantine, food has been a source of time, comfort, and security. While the meals Colorado College has provided students do successfully divide the day, the only consensus regarding them is their mediocrity and the universal longing for Rastall they have fostered.

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