guanajuato: day 12

Thank Thor for ciprofloxacin. Seriously. That stuff is fantastic.

I found that I could get it cheaper than the first time at a small farmacia nearby. The first box I got was $13 for 6 500mg pills, and the ones we have now are $7 for 12 500mg pills. A quarter as much! I think that they are generics, though, since the pills don’t look as fancy as the first box (hopefully they actually are cipro, and not some random chemical isntead). Either way, they are doing the trick.

While not quite completely back to normal, I’m more healthy than I have been since Friday. The gf has mostly recovered from her high fever of two nights ago as well, and so we were looking forward to finally getting to try out salsa-ing tonight. They offer a free hour-long course at the school every Thursday, but rumor has it that tonight has been canceled. So we won’t get to do it until next week. Ah well, I have to admit that I’m not that sad about it :)

The course is still going a little slow, but that has been kind of nice since we had absolutely no interest in doing work while being sick. But more not nice, since I’d rather feel like I was falling behind. We should have a few hours of work to do every day, I think, but have so far had to do less than half an hour a day, all of which was just for homework. We’re covering some useful stuff, but it seems to me that we would be better off studying the details of grammar while being forced to memorize long lists of vocab. So it’s great that I can say “My head hurts,” but I think it would be better if it didn’t take me 30 minutes to read the first page of Harry Potter (in Spanish) because I don’t know the impertect or simple past verb tenses (or a lot of the vocab).

On a different topic, the gf and I tried cooking a little for the first time last night and today. We really need to get used to cooking without clean water, since we have to think and worry about things that have never been a problem. For example, we can’t trust the fruits and vegetables that we buy to be clean (and they most definitely aren’t, by the look of them), but if we rinse them off then they’ll still be dirty. So we could pour bottled water over them, but that would be a waste of bottled water. Or we could boil a pot of water and, after it cools, use that to clean our food. But that would take 40 minutes or so.

So what to do? We’ve decided that anything we eat must be cooked first, and that we can’t “wash” any of the equipment until we are finished using it. It seems better to have some onion in our cheese than to rinse onion off the knife and then use bacteria to cut the cheese. Probably.

So we made mashed potatos last night, but first boiling the water for 15 minutes, then skinning and cubing the potatos and cooking them for another 10 minutes (we figured the water would be sterile at that point). Then we mashed them in a bowl with some butter and milk, and when I went to throw out a piece that had fallen onto the table, the gf said “What are you doing? Just rinse it off and put it back in,” to which I responded “rinse it in what?”

So we made some of the blandest (but still delicious) mashed potatoes that I’ve had in some time. Then today I decided that we needed to try out the fresh tortillas that are made right next to our place. There is basically just a lower-half of a door that a woman stands behind and makes tortillas with a big machine. There is a scale where she sells them a kilo at a time (for USD $1). So we bought a quarter-kilo (at least I think that’s how much I asked for), some cheese from another shop, and some onions and garlic from a tiny fruit/vegetable place nearby, and then made some quesadillas. The tortillas were still hot when we brought them home, and they were delicious! Normally I prefer flour tortillas to corn, but these things were better than any flour tortillas that I have had. And cheaper.

So we’ll probably try out a little more cooking in the near future, which just barely costs less than going out to eat. But it’s fun, and gives us something interesting to do. Unfortunately we don’t really know how to cook Mexican food… But I guess we have time to learn.

One thought on “guanajuato: day 12

  1. Hey you guys,

    What an interesting exercise to cook a meal without letting the food touch any tap water and trying to sterilize it. I presume from your description that you didn’t entirely succeed and realized that you really never can! Thankfully, it doesn’t matter too much at this point, as you’ve already been exposed to the bacteria that made you ill, and you are adjusting to those pathogens more and more each day, so you won’t likely become ill again unless you are exposed to another new strain. So….go ahead and rinse your fresh food and cook as usual like everyone else there does, including the staff at the restaurants where you are eating most days. You’ll be fine from now on.

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