Tonight is my first night of my Wild and Free diet, where I get my food from mother nature, eating only wild and foraged food that is either native to the Boston area, or naturalized.
I’m totally exhausted after a very, very long day of raw food potlucking with some new friends, biking a lot, and hiking a bit, and investigating as many wild edibles as possible! But I did officially start my Wild and Free diet at sunset tonight. I didn’t actually eat much of anything after sunset, because I wasn’t hungry, but I did snack on a couple of wild things in the afternoon, and I collected some stuff for tomorrow, and I can’t wait to do interesting things with my green loot!
The first picture up there is of a willow I found about a half a mile away from Harvard Square on the Charles River. I found out that Willow has the chemical salicin in it, which is the original version of aspirin. If you make a tea out of, or nibble on, the young bark, it acts as a strong inflammation reducer, and pain reliever. I’ve been using it periodically today, since I took a very small branch from the tree, to see if it would help alleviate the pain of one of my teeth, which is having some major issues. I actually didn’t swallow the stuff, just chewed it and then let it sit in my mouth next to the tooth, and it seemed to work. Now that I’m home, and tired the tooth seems worse, so I actually swallowed some of the juice from the bark (but not the bark itself!). It does seem to be helping. Which seems logical, since it’s the real thing.
(Oh, and that pile of colorful stuff in the bottom corner of the picture up there is my bike and trailer and big ol’ teal blue bin for carrying more stuff than I really need…)
And, down there, there’s just a small taste of the beautiful place I decided to spend the evening in, exploring all the good wild and free things nature has to offer. It’s several miles away from where I’m staying these days, so it was more of a treat to be there at sunset, for the beginning of my week’s adventure. It’s not urban at all, though it’s a fairly easy bike ride from here to there (about an hour), so it’s not that much out of the range of my usual food shopping efforts, so it seemed acceptable for this mission.
Anyway, here’s the beautiful Rock Meadow nature preserve, in Belmont, Massachusetts, during sunset tonight.