Monday, 15 September 2014

Oh, honey.

I try really hard in my travels to not collect too much crap.  Yeah, I'll send some postcards here and there, and if I happen upon something really special and unique, I'll consider it an investment.  I'm not raiding a kiosk in Times Square any time soon for 3 for $10 "I heart NY" t-shirts or whatever the equivalent is wherever I am.  I take a lot of photos, and I think that's important, as you will have those forever.  Going through those, I will have memories triggered that I would have completely forgotten about otherwise.  Once I've gotten over the cost of the camera and memory cards, it cost me nothing.  They store easily on a cloud service (sorry would-be hackers, I store no nudes on that service) and take up very little physical space.  

Every once in a while, I will try to engage in commerce.  I wanted to buy soap when I went to Bath, because hey!  That makes a great gift.  You went to a town called Bath and got soap!  It supposedly has magical healing properties because everything in Bath does.  When I saw the prices though....they were charging about $10 per bar.  I don't care what is in that soap, it's soap.

Between moving around a lot and just trying to live a smaller life, I just don't want to accumulate.

So why do I have no kitchen counter space right now?

I've been sneakily collecting honey.

A jar here, a jar there.  Oh, it's lovely.

A heady, exotic tropical Costa Rican honey.  The larger bottles were being sold in recycled plastic soda bottles, but I didn't need a liter.

Some wildflower honey from France that is being scraped to the bottom right now.  They take their honey and bees seriously in France, and every market I went to had beekeepers selling their goods.  I was especially a fan of lavender honey.  It had a pleasant soapiness to it that paired well with raspberries.

Some Spanish rosemary honey.  This is herbal and a little bitter and amazingly good.  I've never found rosemary honey anyplace else but Spanish origin.  If you find some, grab it.  I'm on a vegetarian kick right now, but I will make a breakfast dish of chorizo and sunnside eggs with some of this drizzled on top and it's so good you'll want to roll in it.

Some dark wildflower honey from Piedmont.

Some Scottish heather honey.  It's beautiful and light and dry floral, and it has a very sweet, waxy scent to it..

Oh, and there's a type of honey they produce in remote corners of Turkey from bees feasting on rhododendron nectar.  It's slightly toxic to humans, and with the right dosage, you'll have a nice trip.  Too much, you'll land yourself at the local heath clinic. I didn't find it while I was there, but apparently it can be had for a price.  

Now that my travels consist of getting to point A to point B on foot, I'm hesitant to collect any more.  Carrying jars of honey in my backpack while going up mountains....nope.  Not gonna do it.  It's got to be really spectacular honey for me to make that kind of commitment.

I have yet to buy some proper English honey.  I want to, but I feel a little honey-saturated right now.  They say a good way to build an immunity to local allergens is to ingest a little raw honey every day, as it is filled with pollen.  I don't know if it really helps sufferers or not, but the logic sounds solid and oh, a chance to eat more honey.  They have hives in Windsor Great Park, and I tried some honey from a London hive collective.  Sure, it's a bit more expensive than the stuff labeled "honey" in the grocery shops, but you are supporting local keepers of bees, and that's important.  

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