Frame Shops in Bogota

11012161_10153266474419618_534906740613132810_oWith frame shops, it’s just like real estate — location, location, location. I know that many expats recommended the framer on the corner of Carrera 11 and Calle 85. It’s convenient. I went to the frame shops on Carrera 17 somewhere near Calle 70. (The photo is from the national gallery of art in Bogota.)

After the prodigious amount of items that I got framed in Dhaka, I didn’t have much wall space left in my apartment. So I took my time getting my two items framed in Bogota. On one of my epic six-hour walks, I decided to check out the prices and options for framing. I found the prices reasonable. About $24 to frame a certificate in plain black. I also got a fancy frame for my tiny certificate from the equator in Ecuador. One of the activities at the equator was the egg balancing act. More about that in another blog posting.

Five Years of M’s Adventures

It’s M’s Adventures (madventures to many) fifth anniversary. This map shows just one random day of visitors to my blog…

screen-shot-2016-10-26-at-6-55-14-amAs seen on the map, the readership of my blog seems very dependent on subject. That subject is Bangladesh. Despite the facet that Bangladesh has a small landmass, it has a large population, and in the social media universe, an interesting statistic. If one looked solely at who is reading M’s Adventures and what topics they like, then it would seem that Bangladesh was the center of the world. But, I’m sure that Google could tell you that that Bangladesh is not the most searched term in their engine. I think that the spike in numbers on M’s Adventures is because there simply aren’t that many blogs written in English about Bangladesh.

As I watch my readership numbers dip, I wonder if I should stop writing this blog. Or when it’s just me and my friend’s cat reading the blog.

But, I’m still amazed each day to see how many hundreds have read my little blog. So for now, I keep blogging! After all, if I didn’t blog about it, did it happen?

Coconut – The Water of Life

I’ll admit that I’m nuts for coconut water. When I see fresh coconut water being offered, I immediately develop a thirst. I’ve had them in Aruba, India, Bangladesh, Thailand, Denmark, Singapore, El Salvador (where the photo is from), Virginia, and many other places.

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In some cultures, the coconut is revered. In Sanskrit, the coconut is called the “kalpa vriksha” or “the tree that supplies all that is needed to live.” In WWII, coconut water (the clear liquid inside the coconut), was used as emergency blood plasma. Amazing!

There is sometimes some confusion with coconut water and coconut milk. The water is the clear stuff inside (which takes a coconut nine months to produce and nine seconds to drink) and coconut milk is made from water mixed with grated coconut meat. Hence the white color.

I think the best tasting ones I’ve had have been in Thailand at the airport. But maybe, it’s that when exhausted, getting rejuvenated with a fridge-cold coconut does the trick. Coconuts are restorative and have useful electrolytes which you need when exhausted or rundown. Like when jet-lagged. After all, castaways have survived on coconuts alone. Sometimes, a long flight can make you feel like you are adrift in an endless ocean of security checks and body odor.

The Blood Tree

The weather was hotter than the inside of a blister. Perfect time to go for a walk. So I went for a walk “in the jungle,” but really it was just on the outer perimeter of my lodge, in the Amazon. I was trying to be cool about the squidgy mud squelching up the side of my leather shoes, getting close to the bare skin of my ankles. I as trying to be cool. Then I got bitten by a spider. A zap of fire engulfed my ankle. I looked down. There was a tiny black dot on my ankle. Then it was gone. That’s how small it was. To my credit, I remained calm.

WHAT was I thinking?

There are times to remain calm. And then there aren’t. This wasn’t. Apparently.

IMG_1798.JPGThis I found out when I casually told our guide that I had a bite. Never have I seen anyone move that fast. I didn’t even see him move. One minute he was across a pool of mud. The next right next to me! Then he took out a small plastic bottle and rubbed my ankle. This was the sap from the “blood tree” and it’s a magical potion. My ankle no longer hurt and there was no bite. I wish I had some of that Amazonian jungle blood with me now. Then I’d have the remedy to all bites. Will a company start selling this some day? Will all the secrets go the way of the dodo?