Here is a photo of a cicada skin I found in the garden recently…incredibly it was still clinging to the fence where it had been discarded by the new adult. Perhaps it is perfectly formed for a larval stage which happens underground…but quite alarming to see up close. Thankfully they provide what, for me at least, is a lovely soundtrack to summer.
Occasionally, I have recently experienced pretty painful abdominal cramps and have been exploring what might be causing this. One of the items I have a feeling could be to blame is coffee.
I enjoy coffee, especially a nice flat white, although not as much as I enjoy tea. As I began looking online for items about the sorts of things coffee could cause, I was amazed at just how bad for your digestion this drink can be…and that decaffeinated coffee (which I’m not overly keen on anyway) still has caffeine in it and isn’t necessarily that much better for you.
Anyway, I thought I would see if there were alternatives and came across something called Teeccino which is an American brand which is mostly organic and uses chicory, carob, dates, figs, nuts and natural flavourings to create a slightly sweet alternative to coffee without the nasty potential side effects. I was rather surprised that I really liked it, that it was not dissimilar to coffee in taste…and that with figs in there, it can only have positive digestive impact I suppose!
On telling parents about this, they mentioned something called Camp coffee (again chicory-based but with sugar (!!) and water added) which has been around a while which seems to mainly be a baking ingredient (but you can add water to make a drink). It is interesting that old ideas can come full circle to create a new market which can have health benefits.
Anyone else tried Teeccino? What do you think?
Just to the south of the Coromandel Peninsula, on the main road towards Tauranga and Gisborne on New Zealand’s North Island, lies the Karangahake Gorge, a former area of gold mining. In many ways it is a relief that this practice doesn’t occur in such a beautiful place any more, along with all of the destruction and dubious chemical processes it brings but it does make for a fascinating place to walk (including in some of the old tunnels so make sure you take a torch) and witness abandoned engineering which in many ways looks like fortification.
I got an impression of what the world might look like one day after humanity has perished and forest reclaims land for its own. Interesting. I do wonder why it is that we hold gold in such high regard?
One final musing on NZ TV, if you’ll permit me, and that is the extensive presence of the infomercial.
A lack of big business advertising clearly leaves a space for someone to want to try to flog what often appear to be naff products that you really don’t need. Who knew that you needed something to peel a clove of garlic? How about something to stand on that vibrates and supposedly helps you become thin and healthy? How about a nutrition extractor (aka a fancy blender)? Perhaps a military-style torch is the answer to your prayers? Maybe you could be tempted by an 8-shapes-in-1 pillow? Or how about the infomercial to end them all…life insurance – perhaps they realised that watching them makes you consider taking your own!
You name it, and if it’s really quite poor and cast off from abroad, then they’ll advertise it for several minutes at a time…and all without telling you the price. Boredom guaranteed. Who buys all this rubbish?
It is no wonder that On Demand TV seems so popular here in NZ, to the extent that they don’t seem to care too much about scheduling in the first place…great to have a retreat where you can dodge the majority of adverts.
And just one more thing, the frequency of adverts increases during a programme. If you are watching a movie then you often have no adverts for the first half hour, but by the end you are blessed with their presence every ten minutes or so. Annoying indeed.