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Battling with Biters

Deet free repellents

sunny

A severe case of allergic reaction to any thing that bites led me to look into herbal or non toxic solutions, although I’m not quite ready to throw away my deet infused products just yet I have been impressed with the alternatives.

This repellent is brilliant and smells lovely and fresh, it has worked for me in multiple Jungle locations in Colombia and now I make sure to always have a couple of bottles with me when travelling.

http://www.lessmosquito.com/incognito_reg_Mosquito_Repellent_p/ic-sprayn.htm

I have slept underneath this net and have never had any issues, not one bite, which is a huge point for me because if i’m bitten during the night & the bite is left unattended due to me being asleep and not able to squeeze half a tube of anitsan onto it to stop the reaction from spreading I will wake up to a burning limb that will take at least 10 days & 3 tubes of cream to get over and that’s just one bite, I can’t afford that, so I spent a long time and a few sleepless nights considering what to do in regards to Malaria. You may or may not know that Malaria carrying mosquitos feed at night and after I got quite sick on a trip to India after taking Malaria tablets, ones that are supposed to protect against one thing but yet increasing the risks of other things, unpleasant enough themselves, like being sun burnt. I also have sensitive skin so I was in desperate need to find a solution. And I think this net is it.

http://www.lessmosquito.com/Impregnated_Pop_Up_Net_p/ic-pops.htm

I’ve also used other products from the range.

The soap, which leaves your skin feeling clean and looking shiny is useless as a repellent. I begun using the soap a few weeks before travelling, thinking that maybe a build up on the skin of this product might help keep the biters at bay but I can confirm that it did not. It’s expensive for a bar of soap, but I admit to now using it everyday even if I’m not away.

The Moisturiser is rubbish hated it, it’s too thick gives you arm ache when trying to rub in and generally not worth the £10.00 price tag!

Posted by Dovesei 12:23 Archived in Colombia Tagged mosquitos insect_repellent deet_free sandflies Comments (0)

Jungle Weed & Chocolate

Delightful Fruity Edibles

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What do you do when you find yourself in the middle of the Colombian Jungle with a pound of the finest flavoured smoke you’ve ever tasted? Well, you infuse it with coconut oil buy some dark chocolate pick some fruit and start mixing up desserts that's what! 

That’s what happened to me late last year I’m not going to say exactly where I have been in Colombia just that during Reagan’s war on drugs in the 80’s this particular strain was supposed to have been eradicated, but no matter what happened back then or in Avatar mother nature will always be stronger than mankind and will out win every time. 

Organic in nature and incredibly clean to smoke, I was eager to sample the effects of this strain on the digestive system. So I started infusing! It’s incredibly difficult cooking with weed, you have to be very aware of temperature at all times 2 or 3 degrees is the difference between getting high or wasting good quality bud, unlike olive oil, which in my opinion is better for cooking savoury dishes, coconut oil has a lighter texture and adds to the flavour of the dessert as opposed to overpowering it and as long as you’re using a quality product the medicinal benefits are doubled when infused with weed. And then you add chocolate.

Chocolate increases the effects of the cannabis while increasing and prolonging the presence of our own endogenous cannabinoid Anandamide, (taken from the Hindi word Ananda which means joy bliss and delight). Could this also mean that the medicinal qualities of cannabis are actually raised when taken with chocolate and vice versa? Now I’m not going to get all scientific on ya’ll here if you want to know more that’s up to you to go research if you so wish but I’m all in any way.

So we have fresh organic Colombian bud, virgin coconut oil and chocolate each ingredient containing their own unique medicinal benefits, blended together in tasty deliciousness increasing the effects for a prolonged blissed out experience. Add Guanabana (soursop), bananas, a hand full of strawberries, milk and a blender, you've a simple dessert that not only tastes delicious is full of nutrients, but it also gets you so high that coming down doesn’t feel like an option. 

I’ve never seen people genuinely that high before, maybe its because I’ve worked festivals for years that I’ve become a little jaded, but seeing such a large group of different social & racial backgrounds respond in such a profound and positive way was truly inspiring! As cheesy as it may sound laughter really is the best medicine & there was a whole lot of laughter. How can something so delicious be so damn good for you and not a grain of sugar in sight.

How did I serve the dessert??

Mix the guananbana & bananas in the blender, adding enough milk, so your mixture is like a smooth pudding it should never be runny, add more fruit if it is put portions in the freezer for at least an hour. 

Melt some chocolate add infused coconut oil. 

Pour hot chocolate over frozen dessert (the chocolate will solidify almost instantly) serve with strawberries dipped or not in chocolate it all depends on how high you wanna get? 

Posted by Dovesei 09:42 Archived in Colombia Tagged chocolate high edibles maryjane Comments (0)

Battling with Biters 2

Stupid People

There has been a lot of talk about vaccinations recently although this post is not about the measles debate it did make me think quite a bit about the ideals of social responsibility or lack of it, as it turns out to be.

I spent a little under two months living and working in the jungle, biters were a big problem (more of that later) especially sand flies, anyone who has ever had the misfortune to be bitten by one of these things knows that it can sometimes take months for the area to stop itching and aggravating and that’s not in extreme cases either, generally you would & should do all you can to keep these evil minute monsters away, add one of those bites to sun burnt skin and you're seriously in tropical hell!

I can’t tell you the amount of times I sat and watched people who had arrived in the no joke jungle without a drop; not one drop of insect repellent and then proceed to scratch the living daylights out of themselves, it’s unbelievable misery brought on solely by stubborn stupidity and maybe even a bit of laziness, now don’t get me wrong these biters at this particular place were exceptionally evil even with a thick layer of a well know wax repellent slapped onto my skin couldn’t stop all of them and sweet jesus there were a lot! but it stopped enough of them that I was able to deal with the ones I had while contemplating peoples stupidity.

And people are stupid.

If you are travelling to a tropical location expect to get bitten, why would you not? 

I know the general rule for mosquitos sand flies and anything else you can’t see but can fly into you leaving you with a bite so big it that hurts, is cover up at dusk & dawn but in my experience they are about all day every day that’s including night time.

For the battle with the biters you have to have a plan otherwise you will be in total misery.

Maybe it’s because I have such severe reactions to insect bites that I feel so strongly about people not wearing repellent and then complaining of such discomfort, I have no sympathy for them, none at all, although I do try and offer advice, especially about non toxic alternatives you’d surprised at how many people scoff at the idea of crunching some papaya seeds or dabbing fresh lime juice onto the bite or tea tree oil if you have it handy, these unassuming little gifts that mother nature has given us can greatly reduce the unbearable need to itch, trust me I know about these things! Some people unfortunately for them would prefer to sit there itching, scratching and moaning about chemicals in most store bought repellents then open up their minds to the safer alternative, maybe not 100% effective but still effective enough. Anything's better than what you’re currently experiencing right? Anythings better than taking a folk to your arm right? cos digging fork prongs into you skin for some sweet relief is perfectly ok?

Not the greatest photo but an idea of my reactions. This one a bite on the belly ;-(

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A particular low point, stuck in the Jungle with a swollen foot & nothing else but an eye watering ointment for animals to treat me ;-(

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Posted by Dovesei 10:09 Archived in Colombia Tagged people jungle _ bites mosquitos Comments (0)

Battling with Biters 3

The Ginger One

I once met a guy when I lived on the Pacific Coast here in Colombia, I need you to picture the scene; jungle behind you, your standing on black sand staring at the crystal clear Pacific Ocean now I don’t want to bring looks into things but again I need you to picture the scene. He is under 6 foot but over 5’9 white I mean lilly white or blanco as they say here with you guessed it bright orange hair, a kind of unfortunate stereotype, a man clearly still dealing with issues from his childhood, he constantly needed to be in control of the conversation & spoke at length about how many jungles he had explored and how he never uses repellent but yet his bites were bigger than my bites blah blah blah a man child in the jungle, we got into quite a debate about his irresponsibility or what I perceived to be his irresponsibility because he got off on dancing with death, strolling in a Dengue infested area without any repellent however toxic is in my opinion a foolish man’s move in his opinion he was choosing to take this risk because it was his choice. Fair enough! Each to their own! Still foolish!

He also never had the Yellow Fever Vaccine but you know full well that if he were to contract any of these diseases he would expect the best level of care possible, as we all would BUT some of us whether we believe in vaccines or not put our personal pride before the safety of both ourselves and others.

Now if you feel that strongly about having to wear toxic chemicals on your skin to keep away killer diseases which I do, as mentioned in an earlier post I am looking for natural alternatives of which this douche had not & would not consider. It’s a strange mindset, one that has total, absolute fascination with extreme nature but still carries such a high level of ignorance that mother nature may well make him pay one day. Westerners eh!? If there is one thing I have learned about living in the jungle, it’s respect her AT ALL TIMES!

As I said before if you don't want to continuously use toxic chemicals on your skin look for your own solution that involves more than just rolling bare back. Speak to locals about what they use and how they combat reactions & disease’s and especially what they use to repel insects chances are they will know of a local herbs etc that you can then use and include in your armoury. Never underestimate the locals!

Posted by Dovesei 10:50 Archived in Colombia Tagged jungle _ vaccinations bites mosquitos_repellent_deet_free Comments (0)

Jungle Weed in the City

The oil's not black??

It’s the pound that just keeps on giving!

Before leaving the jungle I made sure to infuse some more coconut oil figuring that this condensed version would be a much (safer) way to travel with that much weed. And I was right sailed through the airport. Not that I advise for you to do this as a way to smuggle drugs but as I’m on a bit of mission in regards to smoke at the moment, I’ve spent the past year reading & researching as much as I can in regards to the serious medicinal benefits that this plant has to offer especially in edible form. I love both food & weed and I wasn’t quite ready to say goodbye to that much green not smack bang in the middle of an experiment anyway.

So with that in mind and a festival approaching, I decided to cook up some muffins, it’s been awhile since I’ve used the oil and since you wouldn’t exactly call it hot here in the Andes it had solidified into a greenish wax hmmm cos it’s black when it’s liquid!?

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Into a pan of boiling water, it went…..

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I cheated & bought a muffins ready mix box my kitchen is not exactly equipped to practice my own version of the Great British Bake off so I resigned to keeping it simple although I did swap water as an ingredient to milk..

Rebel!

Rebel!

I bought some strawberries & caramel.

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I chopped the strawberries into little pieces and added them to the mix which now included the oil.

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Then I waited.

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I took them out of the oven and ate one, it was hot!

I’m still waiting for that to kick in.

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The mini muffins have come out nice & gooey in the middle & crunchy on top, not bad for a ready mix ;-)

Posted by Dovesei 18:38 Archived in Colombia Tagged chocolate health strawberries weed cannabis muffins caramel edibles maryjane Comments (0)

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