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Is There a Reluctance to Eat/Drink in Port?


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since we've only sailed to the Caribbean, I have an irrational fear of getting food or alcohol poisoning...

 

We always brought snacks from the ship for the kiddo when he was younger. At 8 he still enjoys a box of Froot loops while on a beach somewhere. In the last year we relaxed a bit and actually got some alcoholic drinks in Roatan, Costa Maya and Cozumel. DS is allowed to drink only bottled soft drinks.

 

We don't buy food when offshore.

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3 hours ago, Hlitner said:

There are islands like St Barts that have fabulous world-class restaurants, but many of these higher-end islands do not encourage cruise line visits.

 

On St. Barts, there was a cafe near the tender dock that my traveling companion and I enjoyed for a very nice lunch.  Not a world-class restaurant, but it provided us a nice sample of the local cuisine and atmosphere.  I wish I could remember its name.  And, I wonder if it is still there after the hurricane damage that the island experienced.

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On 9/25/2019 at 10:37 PM, clo said:

Hesitant to tell you this but fajitas actually aren't Mexican, they're Tex-Mex.  But glad they were perfect 🙂

No me importa.  It may be, but the best that I have had was in Las Bresis just off of the Malecon in PDC.  Another, and probably the best food that I have had was in PDC also.  There was a street vendor who serves Cochinita Pibil.  It was suckling pig rubbed with spices and cooked in banana leaves.  My mouth waters just thinking about it.  I want MORE!

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9 minutes ago, clackey said:

It was suckling pig rubbed with spices and cooked in banana leaves.  My mouth waters just thinking about it.  I want MORE!

And PLEASE take me with you.  That sounds incredible.  Thanks for sharing.

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I was reading an article about a tourism impact study done in Guadeloupe and according to the findings there has been a whopping 80% drop of cruise passengers patronising local eateries over ten years😦. Makes you wonder if the results would be same for other Caribbean countries/territories🤔. I suspect in Europe more passengers are willing to eat off ship. 

 

Myself I like to eat local food, to me it is part of the travel experience and I enjoy tasting things I could never get a home. So far I have only gotten food poisoning once and it wasn't that severe. Maybe I am lucky but I also try to eat where I see a lot of locals. I figure if they eat there it can't be that bad 😉. As for water I travel with a filter bottle so I can still fill up at the tap and not have to rely on bottle water💧

 

 

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On 9/24/2019 at 12:18 PM, clo said:

I love the mental picture of that!  But it doesn't mean those things would have made him sick.  I eat lots of "plants, and swimming things.'  LOL.

 

We used to have an apt in Rio.  I found that "white" people would only drink bottled water and the "non-white" would drink tap water.  The water is very highly chlorinated and, to me, doesn't taste very good at room temp.  So I would have bottled water by my bed at night as I get a dry mouth.  But tap water the rest of the time.

 

If the water has an obvious chlorine taste/smell, it would be OK, from a microbe standpoint to drink.

 

The problem is, what happens is they run out of chlorine or the chlorinator fails?  And there was a situation of a number of cases of ecoli (a bad strain) in the US, that was traced to the chlorinator on one of the 3 wells serving the town having failed.  But they did not take that well out of service.  And that was the US.  In a non-first world country?

 

I know that in India, the bottled water companies have bottled impure water due to running out of chlorine.

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On 9/25/2019 at 10:46 PM, clo said:

Ya know, having heard this before, I'm beginning to think that we have self-"vaccinated" ourselves against "bugs."  And I think there's a psychological component.  We never think about getting sick.  Maybe that's why we don't.  I still remember chuckling when we ate chicken wings from a street vendor in Guatemala.  I then threw the bones to a dog who was following us, figuring he'd had worse.

 

Exposure to more things, does mean a more robust immune system.

 

As for the chicken wings, if they are fully cooked,  you should be fine.  I will eat fully cooked meats (if I KNOW what the meat it 🙂 ).

 

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On 9/25/2019 at 10:46 PM, clo said:

Ya know, having heard this before, I'm beginning to think that we have self-"vaccinated" ourselves against "bugs."  And I think there's a psychological component.  We never think about getting sick.  Maybe that's why we don't.  I still remember chuckling when we ate chicken wings from a street vendor in Guatemala.  I then threw the bones to a dog who was following us, figuring he'd had worse.

 

Exposure to more things, does mean a more robust immune system.

 

As for the chicken wings, if they are fully cooked,  you should be fine.  I will eat fully cooked meats (if I KNOW what the meat it 🙂 ).

 

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One other thing.  Food poisoning and food borne illness are two DIFFERENT things.

 

Food poisoning comes from spoiled food, or food that has grown certain microbes, such as salmonella.  The sickness comes from toxins, either in the spoilage or from the microbes.  These tend to come on sooner than food/water borne illness, as the microbes do not have to grow.  The duration of the symptoms is typically less, as once the body clears the toxins, it is OK.  There is little that you can do, other than treat the symptoms.

 

Food/water borne illness if a microbe that actually infects you.  These take longer from exposure to symptoms.  And tend to last longer, as you are dealing with an infection.  These may be treated if bacterial or a parasite with antibiotics or other drugs.

 

Both can occur in any country.

 

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I have always been very cheap on caribean cruises and never pay for food when off ship.  But in a few weeks we will be cruising in Italy, Israel and Greece.  I  have a good sized budget for eating on land every day.  Love shawarma from Israel and  have had many recommendations from a close friend who is Greek and grew up there on food we should try. 

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I travel to eat.  And to do just enough work to keep my job. 😄

 

I just am careful where I eat.  But most places with tourist trade, will not risk the bad reviews by making people sick.  With things like Trip Advisor and Yelp, word gets out fast.

 

 

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Like others, I am careful where I eat/drink.  But, bad food quality issues are not confined to ships or ports of call.  I received a call from Kroger's two days ago informing me that the Chicken Salad that I purchased may be contaminated with Listeria.  Return it for a full refund.  Well, I had completely consumed it and I am still "above the grass" and have not visited a hospital's emergency room nor have had any symptoms of a problem.

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We don't always eat on shore, but not because 'we've paid for the food on the ship', but simply because either we are not on shore over a meal time, or more likely we are just way too full from too much to eat on board.

 

We almost always stop some where and have some pop (rarely drink alcohol) for a nice refresher.  Sometimes we will eat at a local restaurant, or have a snack like gelato. 

 

Since some tours include drinks, snacks and or meals, of course we eat then.

 

We are very careful about water and some other foods in places where it may not agree with us.  So far, having traveled to Africa, Asia, South America and the Middle East, plus lots of the Caribbean, Mexico and Central America, no food poisoning--and we're in our 70's.  

 

I've never worried in Europe.  I don't like tap water most anywhere as we are used to our very pure and tasty well water.

 

 

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21 hours ago, clo said:

If you like octopus we had it multiple times in Greece and it was terrific.

 

octopus.JPG

 

My first experience with octopus was in Rome when an antipasto was served with baby octopuses.  I tried them and they were good.  As was the entire dinner that evening.  

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2 minutes ago, rkacruiser said:

My first experience with octopus was in Rome when an antipasto was served with baby octopuses.  I tried them and they were good.  As was the entire dinner that evening.  

Our Whole Foods sells two or three different sizes and I keep meaning to buy and cook

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3 hours ago, clo said:

Our Whole Foods sells two or three different sizes and I keep meaning to buy and cook

 

Baby octopus is quite easy to cook. Just a quick flash in the pan and your done. When the tentacles start curling up you really need to get it off the heat otherwise it will be like chewing rubber. 

 

Adult octopus is a different beast. You have to first tenderise the meat through a low and slow cooking method either roasting in the oven or boiling it in a pot. After that you can chuck it on a grill, toss through a stir fry or try a stew which is personally my favourite way to eat adult octopus😉

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6 minutes ago, SRF said:

I don't eat octopus much.  They are too neat of an underwater creature.  And fairly smart.

 

I do eat squid.  They are stupid. 🙂

 

Actually squid, cuttlefish and octopus are all extremely intelligent:

 

4 things that make the humble squid the supergenius of the sea

Why Squids Are So Smart

 

Can't say it will stop me eating them though😋.

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