Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Bananas & Roaches

I have had a few problems since I have arrived here and one of the more minor - but vexing problems is that of banana storage. I'm not a big fan of AC in any event but am also on a very tight budget - so I run fans in my apartment. Unfortunately the heat in here greatly accelerates the Banana ripening process - they were over ripe within a few hours of my getting them home. So I figured OK then I'll out them in the fridge - now this fridge seems to be cooled beyond reason. My poor over-ripened bananas just went dark brown and look inedible. Does anyone have any ideas?

Sadly roaches seem to be a way of life here. I have been told to spray Raid liberally around the apartment perimeter and pour bleach down the shower drain at night. I've really only had one roach attack. He was in the shower and that's exactly where I wanted to be. Now I'm no stranger to roach warfare but the guys I've dealt with in the past have been 1/2 cm long (about the size of the word 'long'). I would stand on or otherwise crush these nasty little things and flush them down the toilet. Now their Mexican cousins are the size of small rodents and I cant bring myself to stand on one (I'm afraid that it will jump up and manage to get on me). So I ended up arming myself as best I could with the weaponry available in this apartment: air freshener and a shovel. I managed to stun him with the air freshener and scoop him into the toilet with the shovel. I feel he may have survived and be somewhere very far away from here smelling lavender fresh.
Any further advice on keeping these guys out and/ or dealing with them when found?


mexpat said...

Cats are the way to go, so I've heard. Chico isn't interested in them until after they've been sprayed with poison and are running around like mad.

As for bananas... hmmm. I end up freezing them pretty regularly for use in smoothies when they go too ripe. I guess just buying a couple bananas rather than a whole bunch might be the best approach. Plus, it will be getting cooler here soon.

mexpat said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
mexpat said...

Had to edit my last post, it wasn't English.

This is Hans.... Unfortunately you still haven't fixed your BLOG! You incense me.

For roaches, I use the spay, then grab a paper towel and squish them. Be warned, they will end up on you. They can fly and land on us. Allie seems to be unnaturally attracted to them and they bee line for her. She gets really upset and makes a big fuss about it.

For the bananas and food in general, you need to think about food in a different way here. We make many small trips to make sure we get fresh edible food. It seems that the food stores do not get the "quality" vegetables and fruits we get in the states. They just don't last as long. So, shop in smaller trips and get the freshest stuff.

Also, not all fruit/vegetable vendors are created equal. For instance, Walmart has superior produces. Mega has superior boxed and canned items. Walmart has better cheeses and cold cuts. Mega has better fresh baked breads.

I am not sure what kind of options you have on the island, just look around.

Good luck with the bugs and the fruit. Such is life in paradise.


naidyfinn said...

kill the roaches with hairspray then burn them. they have to be burned.

bananas....allie's right. no bulk buying in the tropics my dear...i should know living in England :-)

turn up the temp in your fridge to 5C or whatever that is in F. the skin just goes brown, they're fine on the inside...XXX

Jose said...

Here are my $.02: For the Bananas, you've had a lot of good comments. Part of your problem there is two fold. First is an issue of taste. The American taste bud is used to the harder (greener as it were)variety of bananas. In Mexico either because the local taste prefers them more ripe (read sweeter) or lack of refrigeration (I will not bring up the fact that American bananas might be bio-enginereed to not ripen as quickly) your bananas get over ripened too quickly. You can also try and get bananas that are greener and let them ripen in a paper bag, this will keep bugs out and moisture in. Or you can just get used to the sweet taste of a ripe banana.

Roaches... Well that's one thing I don't particularly miss about living in the tropics. Not because I'm afraid of them, but because as you know (or maybe you don't) they are just bothersome. I think is funny how we just swat flyes away, but freak out when roaches are around. Most roaches like to feed on food (although they hang out in questionable damp areas), whereas flyes like to feed on crap and rotten stuff (although they also like hang around food). Oh well... Anyway, yeah you're going to have to get used to squishing them, have lots of napkins around so you can pick up the guts after you deal with them. You can use the chemicals and stuff, but I'm not a fan of toxic fuming everything in sight to get a roach. So my advice is a flyswatter and some papertowels. A flip flop will also do nicely.

Anna said...

Hans - I might have to ask you to show me how to make my blog more comment friendly.
Jose - I like RIPE bananas not green ones but mine went dark brown and mushy within about 4 hours! I'm going to have to buy and eat.
I just cant swash roaches - I hate the crunch sound. They don't crawl back up the toilet right?
Perhaps I can just get Allie to visit and they'll all jump on her.
Allie - not sure I can get a cat here but on a sad note - do you remember Late - Roberta's cross eyed cat? He died today:(
See you two tomorrow - want to come cave diving Jose?

Jose said...

That is a silly question... Of course! I'll try anything once... I'm strongly thinking of the spring... How's Cozumel around then?

Swanny said...

Peel the bananas, wrap them in foil and freeze them. Nothing better than a frozen banana. If you want it softer, take it out in the morning and let it thaw in the fridge.