Weekly Question #12: Would you travel to a country considered to be dangerous?
A somewhat knotty and gritty question, but one which our Belles approached with their usual aplomb and open minds. No-one, either on the Facebook page, or on the forum, said that they wouldn’t travel to a dangerous country, and the very definition of ‘dangerous’ was much discussed.
Andrea, Justine and Brittany all think that many place are unreasonably labelled as ‘dangerous’ by the media or governments, and the best advice can be to get advice on the ground, from local people. As Margo points out, terrorist attacks have proved that things can happen anywhere, at any time.
Generally, it seems we’re a pretty intrepid bunch: Krista visited Bosnia at a time of great upheaval and violence; Justine travelled through Cairo with armed guards; and Brittany has spent time living in Zimbabwe, a country often considered to be off-limits.
Though it takes a lot to scare a Travel Belle, she’s not foolish either. Brittany says: “we definitely avoid locations that are currently in conflict,” and Justine adds: “we put as many precautions in place as possible to ensure the best level of safety we can for ourselves.”
Would you travel to a country considered to be dangerous? And how do you define danger?
Weekly Question #11: Which country’s cuisine is your favorite?
It’s safe to say that a true Travel Belle is perfectly capable of eating her way around the world – we see it as our duty to sample all the Italian gelato, Middle-Eastern mezze and Indian curry we chance upon on our adventures. It was hard to pin down favorite cuisines, but our epicurean participants took on the challenge and made our stomachs growl.
Justine is partial to Syrian cuisine, and the way she describes it, the food really does sound delicious: “Homemade dips of hummus and baba ganoush were aplenty and it was such a joy to just sit in a small restaurant and tuck into these dips with endless supplies of bread, small plates of pickled vegetables and olives, and of course glasses filled with freshly brewed tea. We also enjoyed eating gorgeously sticky squares of baklava and drinking beautiful fresh lemon and mint juice; the lemon was tart and sweet at the same time.” – We can only hope that Syria one day recovers enough that peace, prosperity and a fabulous cuisine can exist again.
Brittany is a fan of Thai and South Indian food: “How can you go wrong with giant puffy dosas served with curries that are sweet, sour, and spicy all at once, or noodles fried in front of you on a roadside stall?” – That’s some seriously good street-food, and as Brittany says, it’s cheap too!
Katy champions Peruvian cuisine: “From their simple market snacks of spicy potato causa and sweet quinoa balls, to the zingy freshness of ceviche and simple honesty of a hearty stew and rice, it’s such a diverse and exciting cuisine.” – and a lot of Western ‘superfoods’ are eaten as a matter of course in Peru. Delicious and healthy cuisine!
Hellenophile Amanda loves all things Greek, and she sure knows her way around the food there: “Top on my list is a little taverna on the island of Ithaka which serves a spit roasted pork loin stuffed with peppers and kasseri cheese.” – A restaurant fit for a Belle dinner, by the sounds of it.
Margo loves Italian food, but she was pleasantly surprised by Montreal’s take on bagels during her recent trip to Canada: “in Montreal at Viateur Bagels – we went in for a bagel and ended up having lunch complete with white wine sangria. It was unexpected how delicious it was.”