Food Exploration 101 ?>

Food Exploration 101

Whenever I’m in between adventures and I want to re-create some of those same feelings of exploration and inquisitiveness, but on a much cheaper scale, I turn to what I like to call “food exploration”. When your in an exotic country browsing local markets seeing…smelling…and tasting…the local delicacies is one of the highlights of the travel experience.

But what if your not in an exotic locale? It doesn’t matter.  You can explore foreign foods domestically or some of your area’s own local delicacies with a little research. Most of us live in or within driving distance of a fairly large metropolitan area…and with any large city comes diversity.

So here are the places I focus on when doing urban domestic food exploration: Farmer’s Markets – The bad thing about most major supermarkets is that they tend to carry what the majority of the population wants and it tends to get boring.  Farmer’s markets are a good option to find local fresh produce, but they are also a good way to find fruits/vegetables/local delicacies that you won’t find at a supermarket.

rambutanPrime example is the picture above.  While exploring a local farmers market that caters heavily to the local Asian population, I discovered the hairy little fruit bugger above called a Rambutan.  They are in the same family as the Lychee from southeast Asia and absolutely delicious…. as my girlfriend can attest because she is now addicted to them.Small Ethnic Groceries – These are a treasure trove of foods and food stuffs that may not be in your normal eating habits.

Asian, Latin,…etc groceries are less pressure than going to a restaurant where you can’t even read the menu, but also don’t often have full traditional meals prepared. Doesn’t mean you can’t try those strange looking bean curd desserts though! Just pick items that look good.  Some will be winners, and some will be losers.Ethnic Neighborhoods – Any large city or metropolitan area will have a variety of different cultures represented.

These neighborhoods tend to stick together due to familiar culture and traditions… a perfect example being Chinatown in San Francisco, or Little Italy.  If you search out these neighborhoods they often offer some amazingly unique eats that people have brought back from cultures abroad.Local Favorites – If something is good….or a local favorite, word of mouth often spreads pretty quickly.

Polling the locals who have lived in a specific area for most, if not all of their lives will lead you to locals only spots that are hidden gems.Internet Resources –  Just like word of mouth, if something is good people will talk about it.  Use Yelp and search engines to scope out different cuisines/restaurants/eateries….i.e. searching for (Ethiopian restaurant…etc.)

Some rules of exploration that may help you out.

Always be inquisitive and friendly. People running these businesses want customers.

If you don’t know what it is…ask. Most people are friendly and willing to help if they can.

If it’s for sale and edible… someone ate it and liked it…but it doesn’t mean you will.

Keep an open mind and don’t judge a whole cuisine based off one item.

If you have food allergies….ask for help and read labels.  No sense going to the hospital when you have a allergy to shellfish and eat something stuffed full of them.

If all of the menu is in English it might not be as traditional as you think…doesn’t mean its bad.

If the place is full or there is a line…there’s a reason….it’s good.

Man Vs. Wild: Survival Training ?>

Man Vs. Wild: Survival Training

Nothing says manly like making fire, eating grubs, and learning how to survive the harsh mistress that is nature.  And that is exactly what I did this past weekend at the Southeast School of Survival with instructor Jim Greene.  I figured as outdoorsy as I am I had better learn some skills to stay alive if say a zombie outbreak happens, a giant 2012 movie-esk asteroid wipes out half the population, or I just get totally lost following a pretty butterfly in the woods.  And who better to teach me than retired Airforce SERE (Survival, Evasion, Resistance, and Escape) instructor Jim Greene who taught pilots, astronauts, and aircrew how to survive desert, arctic, ocean, and jungle environments for 30+ years.

So I went up to the beautiful north Georgia Mountains near Ellijay, GA stoked to experience and gain some survival knowledge that, I believe, has been forgotten over the generations.  Think of what our forefathers had to do on a daily basis to get food, shelter, and water.  They had hunt, gather, build, and wander.  And in many parts of the world cultures still continue to live the same way.  It was something I took for granted with all our modern conveniences.

After a long drive winding my way up into the mountains I arrived at base camp and we got to work straight away.  We chopped down trees and setup our parachute tent base under which many of the discussions of tactics and techniques would be had.  After which, Jim gathers all of us around and the first thing he says is “You’ve all seen Man vs. Wild, Survivorman,…guess what? they are TV shows…meant to entertain.”  To which I fully agree.  I mean come on Bear Grylls. Bounding from rock to rock, getting naked every show, and drinking his own urine?…yea clearly this guy knows how to survive. The whole weekend Jim was making fun of the so called TV “survival” experts and for a guy who has been in many extreme survival situations, he had a great sense of humor. The Southeast School of Survival was two days of non-stop knowledge and rebuffed many of the misconceptions I had seen on TV.  Your on a desert island with water and food and you decide to make a raft to head out to open ocean to “hopefully” get found…nope…dead.  You leave that nice river water source where people would be looking for you to bushwhack through the wilderness…nope…dead.  You drink your own urine to “rehydrate”…um gross…and nope…more dehydrated…dead.

Jim really seemed to know what he was talking about.  We created shelters out branches and leaves, made fire, created fishing nets and snares, learned what was edible and what was not.  And yes I did try some wild foods.  We ate prickly pear cactus, acorns, and oh yea did I mention I ate live acorn grubs as they wiggled in my mouth?…mmm mmm good.  To be honest it didn’t taste bad at all once you got past the strange feeling of something squirming around on your tongue.  Would I eat them on a normal basis? Na…but put me out in the wild without any food and I’ll be chowing down.

To put it mildly, it was an eye opening  experience that broadened my views of what people use to do and are still doing in parts of the world.  It makes you appreciate those modern conveniences like a supermarket, indoor plumbing, and nice houses that keep the bugs out. Would I call myself a survival expert after this experience? Not by any means, but lets just say I’m in better shape than the average citizen. Anyone up for the grub buffet?

How I Fixed My Garage Door By Myself ?>

How I Fixed My Garage Door By Myself

An Overview Of Installing And Repairing Garage Doors

Would you like to replace an existing garage door that you have right now, one that is not functioning properly? These are essential components to any household, especially if they are part of an attached garage. It is possible that both mechanical and electrical aspects of the garage door may be malfunctioning. Here are some ideas on what might optim construct srlbe wrong, and also ways of resolving these issues including finding a local professional to help you out. Go ahead and read the whole story on http://www.optimconstruct.ro/usi-garaj-bacau/ and see how that can help you.

Components Of A Garage Door

There are many different components on a garage door including the door, the panels on the door, the torsion springs, rollers, the tracks, and the motor. You may also have a problem with the transmitter that is handheld, the one that is adjacent to the door leading into your garage, and the laser eye that allows the garage door to remain shut. Putting this all together takes quite a bit of experience, and it can also be very difficult to take an existing garage door out. That is why many people will decide to call a professional that is not only good at installations, but removing existing garage doors, eliminating the possibility of making errors or even getting hurt.

Dangers Associated With Garage Doors

Before you decide to do this on your own, it is important to understand how you can actually be hurt trying to repair this on your own. Of utmost importance are the torsion springs, springs that are under a great deal of pressure, and if removed in the wrong way, could lead to significant injuries. Likewise, if you forget to unplug the garage door, or to block the rollers from coming down on you while you are either removing it, or doing repairs, you could be hit in the head causing substantial injuries simply because you do not possess the skills to do this in the most efficient manner.

Finding The Best Garage Door Installation And Repair Company

It’s actually very easy to find one of these businesses. There are several in most major cities, and at least a few in rural communities. These companies will have the proper licensing, and experienced professionals that work for their business that can do all of this for you. It is only by getting estimates from the companies that you find that you can determine which one will help you for the least amount of money. Keep in mind that even if it is inexpensive, you need to also work with a company that comes with exceedingly high recommendations to make sure that the job will be done properly the first time.

These are just a few observations on how garage doors work, how they can malfunction, and ways that you could do repairs. If you do not know how to do any of this, and you would prefer working with a professional that does, simply search on the web for reputable garage door companies. They will install and repair any garage door that you have, and many are affordable within reason. It is the easiest way to resolve any problems that you are currently experiencing with your garage door that needs to be repaired or replaced.