Everyday Life in SCZ – buying fruits and veggies

My sister once asked me, ‘what does everything look like there?’ And it was hard to answer, because it’s the same as anywhere really, but different. That doesn’t tell you anything. So I’ve been taking photos of daily life things and then grouping them. This one is (just like the title says) about buying fruits and vegetables.

Those first two photos are from grocery stores. Nothing particularly different here, but it’s been over a year so maybe you’ll see something I don’t. I should note though, the signs don’t always match the fruit. So that’s something!

Next up, a series of photos from the a few of the outdoor markets in the city.

Side story about watermelons here: I was trying to tell the woman I wanted a crispy watermelon, not one that would be mushy in the middle, but I blanked on the word for crispy. So naturally I resorted to substituting the word for crispy to snapping my teeth at her like a deranged gringa. She thought I was hilarious but eventually understood what I wanted when I made the parallel between baked chicken and fried chicken. In case you’re wondering the word I was needing was ‘crocanté’…. and she got me exactly what I wanted.

You may be wondering about how clean the fruits and vegetables are. It’s not uncommon for the fruits and veggies to have dirt on them. And there is no government food safety regulation agency here. So before eating anything I soak the fruits and veggies in the kitchen sink in a mixture of white vinegar and water. Some households use a germ killer that is sold in the supermarkets but I find that sometimes it leaves an after taste, and I wonder about the safety of it. White vinegar removes bacterias, and none of us have gotten sick since I’ve been using it.

Next up fruit trucks! These trucks are parked all over the city. You just put on your hazard lights and pull over. Very handy on days when you don’t have time to go to the market but have a hankering for something tasty!

When was the last time an old vehicle passed you on the street loaded down with a ton of potatoes or hauling a load of plantains on the luggage rack?

I’ve never tasted better fruit than what I’m eating these days. Everything is seasonal, so you can’t always find your favorites but you’ve gotta be nuts not to be able to find a favorite in every season.

Spanish lesson:

  • fruits = frutas
  • vegetables = verduras
  • markets = mercados
  • trucks = camiones
  • delicious = delicioso
  • ripe = madura


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