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Blog Entries from Joel's Hear

  1. Moths!

    Last night on the roof terrace of the hotel my kids and I found a giant moth, and we carefully picked it up and played with it. After a couple of minutes, I tried to put it back down, but it refused, so I took it to the room to show my wife and the baby. The baby was terrified. Today, my girl found a different, equally huge, drowned corpse of a moth. I was sad, and I placed it on the table to look at its beauty. Look back a minute later and the lifeless thing was moving! We stayed near it...
  2. Animals and Fruits

    Here are some animal pics I have taken, along with a new picture of a huge cherimoya next to some "guacamoles" :). Lots of the good tropical fruits I find I never post, like bananas, oranges, grapefruits, limes, etc. because everyone already knows these.
  3. Zapotes

    Today I went to the market in Campeche and found an assortment of tropical fruits. Chicozapotes and Zapotes Negros (Small zapotes and Black Sapotes). The Small Sapotes, almost the same size as the black zapote, taste like aliens. Pear, apple, wood, sweet potato are the identifiable flavors, but they don't really taste like any of those. Black sapotes are even more alien, tasting like burnt plastic or chocolate pudding but really like neither. Zapote and sapote are used interchangeably and...
  4. New fruits

    I'm breaking my rules by publishing pictures of an animal with my fruits. That's fine, I guess. There's also a vegetable with the mushrooms. Nopales, or prickly pear cactus leaves. I have pictures of a cacao (chocolate) fruit, a zapote, a sapodilla, some toronjitas, and some giant Campeche guavas. The weird pink thing is a dragon fruit: it tastes like a kiwi a bit, but the taste is not strong. It grows from a type of cactus.
  5. Rambutanes y moras

    Here are a few photos of the fruits I got today. The strawberries, plums, and black raspberries are understandable, the red, hairy things are called rambutans. They originated in southeastern Asia, and they are quite tasty!
  6. My neighborhood fruit stand

    There is a fruteria near my apartment along with a panaderia (a bakery) run by two young boys of the Maya people. They are in the same building and indeed are affiliated, but you have to pay them separately. The sweet breads are very simple, made of only sugar, flour, and an oil mixture: palm oil, butter, and lard. The fruits are of exceptional quality. The fruit boy is perhaps ten while the bread boy is five. Their mother is often there to help with the father probably out at his main...
  7. Post # 5- Good but not great trip

    My trip to the Market of the Ancients- It is a long combi ride to the market (a combi is a form of public transportation via van, with about 15 people riding), and it can be a cramped, un-air-conditioned trip. The market is a large building with probably a thousand or so venders, selling anything from household goods to meat to seafood to fruits and vegetables. The meat and the seafood is rarely refrigerated; I always avoid the seafood obviously, but the meat is often fresher than any...
  8. Post # 4- Pictures

    I'm still going to the Ancient's Market tomorrow, but here are some pictures I already have. The first picture is of Paradise mangos next to tunas blancas (prickly pear), sitting next to the seeds from a white guavas. The second is blackberry cobbler pancakes.The third picture is of maracuyas, the sour passion fruits. Inedible because of the aci, but they make a wonderful tropical "lemonade".
  9. Post # 3 Animals

    I really love animals, of all types. I saw an animal in the Mérida, Mexico zoo that caught my attention and I really liked. It was some sort of white deer, which had its antlers partially sawn off. It didn't look unhappy, nor particularly happy. They treat their animals well at this zoo, feeding them plenty of fresh fruits, vegetables, and/or grains, but space is limited, and the temperature is hellacious, reaching over 100 degrees Fahrenheit in the spring. The handlers are kind. This...
  10. Sops of all sorts!

    Post # 2- Guanábanas, Zaramuyos, and, to a much lesser extent, Jungle Sops The guanábana, known in English as the sour sop, and graviola by holistic pharmaceutical companies, is probably my favorite new-found tropical fruit. Its taste is perfectly indescribable, though descriptions I've read saying strawberry, pineapple, and banana rolled into one scary-looking, scaly-like-a-dragon fruit do fit the bill. It is described as a cancer cure, which I cannot attest to, but its awesome power is...
  11. Muchos mangos in summer!

    Fruit post #1 Mangos- Mexico grows more mangos than any other country in the Western Hemisphere, though the world's premier producer, India, grows seven times more. The mango is native to India. Here in Mexico, there are many types of mangos, all with strengths and weaknesses. Mango paraíso or paradise mango (also called Tomy or Tommy Atkins): this is the one you'll probably see in the store, developed to be very stringy for shipping. I like the flavor, this one has got a very tropical...