Subject: Re: Bad food on your travels
Hi Lucy & Ziners:

In reference to Lucy's French meat marketing experience, I ran into the same confusion in Nairobi. I went out with my friend's son to buy some meat for the family, beef was the preference, but the slabs and chunks of meat on show were totally unrecognizable. My young friend was so proud to walk into the shop with me (this was in a Nairobi slum) but soon lost his gaze of admiration when he realized I couldn't identify a thing. He asked if we ate meat in Canada - well, yes, but it's cut differently. So I chose a hunk and left it at that. Apparently I chose a good bit because, unlike some other meals I've had there, it was quite delicious, and didn't break my teeth.

Bad food? Anything laced with cilantro, makes me violently ill.

The most boring meals I've had - not neccessarily bad, but definitely boring - were in East Kwaio, Solomon Islands. A week of - potato, potato only. Not potatoes as we know them, but pana, cassava and yam (albeit good, real yam, not the yellow sweet potato yam we get in N. America). It was a hunk of hot potato for dinner, and cold leftovers for breakfast. Cold for lunch if there was any left over from breakfast, or, as a treat, a hot one. Ick. I supplemted everyone's diet occasionally with instant ramen noodles from the trade store (they couldn't afford such luxuries) and slippery cabbage from the jungle. Love slippery cabbage, it's rather like a thick spinach, although the villagers weren't impressed. Only those who lived in the Big Smoke of Honiara were interested in vegetables.

Another time I spent 3 weeks in the rain in W. Are'Are, also on Malaita in Solomons and because of the rain, nothing was growing and the gardens were washed away. So it was a week of instant ramen noodles with 2nd grade domestic tinned tuna. High smelling tuna that when I accidentally opened a souveneir tin I brought home (the label was in Pijin) it was enough to scare the cat. When the tuna ran out it was tins of corned fat (supposedly corned beef but doesn't bear any resemblance to said item).

I think I've lost my appetite now.

Nadine Vancouver, BC