Fall Faves Friday

I love every season

The fresh vegetables & fruits, the colours around me, the smell of the air. Every season has its own charms, that’s why I can’t just pick out one favorite. I adore fall because the colors of the leaves are just perfect. It’s like you are walking around in a painting. Last week, I went to the woods together with my dog. We wandered around, looking for chestnuts. The shadows of the warm-colored October sun on the leaves really catched my eyes, a perfect way to sooth my mind.

While wandering around, I saw a group of people and a hippie-like guide who were gathered around some mushrooms. I decided to join the group. What followed were some pretty interesting stories about all kinds of mushrooms. Today, I will discuss one of them in my new blog categorie: Fall Faves Friday.

Amanita muscaria

The Amanita Muscaria is so woven into the history of man that chances are likely, when you ask a child to draw a mushroom, that this kind, with its red hat and white dots, appears on the paper. Muscaria means flies, and of course this name doensn’t come out of the blue. In the past, this mushroom was used as an insecticide. Soaked in milk, the toxins present in the mushroom attracted flies. When these drank the brew, they got intoxicated and died.

This mushroom also has psychoactive characteristics and is therefore famous to be used as a drug as it causes hallucinations. In Belgium, there is a famous nursery rhyme about a gnome and a mushroom. This song also doens’t come out of the blue… The fact is that when you eat little bits of these mushrooms, you will have the feeling that everything around you is bigger than it is in reality. But this mushroom isn’t only toxic for flies, but also for humans. The toxins present in the mushroom affect kidneys and liver. Men from Lapland found a solution for this problem. They let their wives eat Amanita Muscaria’s and afterwards drank their urine. The liver and kidneys of the wives had filtered out all of the toxic substances, but the effect remained the same. Clever boys!

Another story the hippie-guide told us about the Amanita Muscaria is that it is a natural means of abortion. Male deers would crush these mushrooms as soon as the female deers were in-calf. Clever deers! (:


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