I’ve done a little traveling the last few years; to El Salvador, Guatemala, Uganda, Ethiopia, India, Kenya, the Philippines, the Dominican Republic. And I’ve done some strange eating. And not once have I gotten sick. My secret? Magic green powder.
At the end of each day I mix up a dose of green powder, hold my nose, and guzzle it down. In juice the greens become a sludgy dark brown liquid with bits of what might very well be tree bark suspended in it. Yes, it smells and tastes as bad as it looks.
I don’t eat any uncooked fruits or vegetables without a peel on these trips so I wind up with a mostly meat, beans and starch diet when I’m traveling abroad. The green powder fills in nutritional holes and the probiotics help with digestion. And there’s one more, um, benefit: The greens don’t, um…they make you…well, they keep things moving along…rápidamente. I wonder if critters just don’t have time to set up shop, you know?
The greens have taken on thousands of kid hands covered in germs, lots of questionable meals, but no test has been greater than lunch in the Amazon jungle of Ecuador.
That’s right, folks – Grub worms. Or what the Ecuadorians called “slug bugs.” Rubber-skinned on the outside, juicy on the inside. Discovered under the bark of yucca plants during harvest. Then smoked and served in a bowl…in a yellow liquid of unknown origin.
The smell? Hickory smoked vomit. The taste? Similar. Very similar.
Keely went first.
And, well, I coulnd’t let a girl show me up.
It actually wasn’t that bad. There was an initial disgusting squish of juice that was very awfully bitter. But then it just tasted burned – smokey. It was the texture that got to me. Once the slippery insides went down I was left chewing the skin – and it just wouldn’t go away. Someone said kids in the Amazon chew on slug bugs like gum. Like nasty nasty gum.
24 hours later I landed in Nashville. And had to make a pit stop before heading to baggage claim. Apparently, magic green powder wasn’t magical enough.
Keely, by the way, is just fine. Went right to baggage claim with no issues. Because she did not “eat” the grub worm, technically speaking. She chewed on it, ate most of it and spit out the rest.
I mocked her for this. But today I call her wise.
Despite the end-of-trip intestinal distress, I’m so thankful to have traveled with such good friends to Ecuador. So worth it. Hundreds of kids have been sponsored…and more every day!
Could you help us? Please head over to the Ecuador trip page, find your favorite post and tweet it or share it on Facebook or e-mail the link to friends. Together we could see a few hundred more kids sponsored this week! Thanks.