Bespoke Cuban Holidays for the Discerning Traveller

Remember the other week when I was painting my nails electric purple and being cured of a hacking cough? I left you with a Cuban classic – an excellent remedy, using fresh oregano – and promised you three others this week: using aloe vera, tomato paste, and petrol with milk!
How many times have you burned yourself putting in or taking things out of the oven, from under the grill or over a boiling kettle? For small burns like these Cubans have three nifty solutions: toothpaste, egg whites or tomato paste. Just pat gently onto the burn and it will be immediately soothed and not blister. Please write in to us if you are a biochemist and can tell us why.
For headaches, hernias and arthritis folks here search out fresh aloe vera from their garden. Peel it, then lie down and put slices of it on your forehead to relieve your thumping head. For hernia´s and arthritis also peel the aloe and eat a small cube of the green flesh, morning and night.
I know it’s the very last one, though, that has you riveted. Why would anyone in their right mind add 3 drops of petrol to a small glass of milk (no sugar) and actually drink it? Because it’s said to instantly kill parasites – especially Giardarsis, one of Cuba´s most virulent, water-bound organisms. The vast majority of people, of course, take prescribed medicine to cure this particular ailment but some – mainly older – pump for the petrol solution. The milk is to protect the stomach. I don´t know that I would dare try this remedy myself but many individuals here swear by it.
It’s very easy to get infected with la Giardia, by the way, but it’s equally easy to avoid. How to protect yourself in 3 easy steps is the topic of next week’s blog – and it doesn´t involve petrol, I promise!

Sue Herrod

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