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There is wind where the rose was,
Cold rain where sweet grass was,
And clouds like sheep
Stream o'er the steep
Grey skies where the lark was.

Nought warm where your hand was,
Nought gold where your hair was,
But phantom, forlorn,
Beneath the thorn,
Your ghost where your face was.

Cold wind where your voice was,
Tears, tears where my heart was,
And ever with me,
Child, ever with me,
Silence where hope was.

November by Walter de la Mare
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Bacteria

LynneLynne Your TeacherHomePosts: 9,585 mod
You might have seen adverts on TV that offer to kill 99.9% of all bacteria, but you might also have heard of "friendly" bacteria. Not all bacterial is harmful, in fact it is essential for our well being.

This article is really interesting:-

https://www.theatlantic.com/health/archive/2015/06/gut-bacteria-on-the-brain/395918/
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Comments

  • saraalsaraal Posts: 73 ✭✭
    My love "Bacteria"

    Lactobacillus bacteria that's are present in yogurt have a lots of benefit.
    Not only this bacteria. But it's amazing to know about the linke between mental disease and bacteria, and how they act in positive and negative way.

    I wish if I could be a part of this study, it's very important with increasing in the number of children who have autism.
  • mheredgemheredge Teacher Here and therePosts: 28,081 mod
    I'm a big fan of cheese and without all sorts of bacteria, there would not be the wonderful variety of cheeses we can get.

    Lactic acid bacteria play the main role in converting the milk sugar (lactose) into lactic acid. This is vital in lowering the acidity of cheese (pH) and makes the cheese inhospitable to many organisms that would spoil it. This is also the first step towards the cheese's deliciousness.

    There are the lactic-acid producing bacteria and streptococci that helps the initial cheese ripening, and are also very important in yogurt-making. Some varieties of bacteria survive and contribute to the flavour in many cheeses like Emmental, Gruyere, and Italian hard cheeses like Pecorino Romano.

    Molds love cheese (I grow a lot of this!). Leave any cheese in a fridge without protection and it will quickly be colonized by a fuzzy carpet of interestingly colored spores. Most of these are species of Penicillium and contribute to cheese's unique flavor. Only two species of blue mold, P. roqueforti and P. glaucum give the flavour and texture of blue cheeses. These can grow in low-oxygen environments, so they grow well in the small cracks in the interior of a ripening cheese.

    White molds found on the outside of all soft-ripened cheeses produce enzymes that break down the milk proteins of the curds which leads to the ripe layer surrounding a firm interior.

    Smear bacteria is responsible for the pong of cheeses like Münster and need salty, moist environments. The smell of these cheeses is often likened to smelly feet which is unsurprising as brevibacter can also be found on human skin and grows especially well without interference from personal hygiene.


  • filauziofilauzio Posts: 1,614 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Well, we can say that health starts from gut.
    We should take care of our gut bacteria, which turn out being our mightiest army against any intrusion by harmful kind of germs.
    The bacteria population grows at an exponential rate, so, assuring that we keep a suitable diet, its army will soon consist of a myriad of soldiers.
    Nevertheless, we should avoid as much as possible the assumption of antibiotics.
    These cutthroat medical substances, in fact, together with possibly killing the strain of harmful bacteria, will slaughter the whole army of good bacteria.
    In order to resettle the garrison then, you'll have to mop up tons of probiotic yoghurts.
    By the way, the link between gut bacteria and brain, along with the prospective of a successful fight against neurological disorders such as autism are really amazing and fascinating.
    glad to stop strict diet, splashed in belly flop? Don't care you're not light, here on English hop !
  • mheredgemheredge Teacher Here and therePosts: 28,081 mod
    I've been drinking kombusa, a fermented tea drink. Here I have seen it as mushroom tea, which doesn’t sound appealing but it is an interesting concoction that is supposed to be good for the gut @filauzio.
  • filauziofilauzio Posts: 1,614 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Ah-ah, yes @mheredge, mushroom tea really wouldn't sound that much appealing at first.
    As long as it results appealing to the gut's bacteria though, you'd better to comply to the intestinal army's order.
    glad to stop strict diet, splashed in belly flop? Don't care you're not light, here on English hop !
  • mheredgemheredge Teacher Here and therePosts: 28,081 mod
    I can understand why they call it this @filauzio as the skin, or scoby as I think it is called is alive and does look rather off putting. But the taste of the tea is very nice. My challenge is to try to find some of this 'mushroom' to make fermented tea at home. It's not difficult to find in the UK but so far I've not had any success in France. Do health food shops in Italy sell it?
  • filauziofilauzio Posts: 1,614 ✭✭✭✭✭
    I confess @mheredge that all I can say about this SCOBY, which I understand is an acronym for symbiotic culture of bacteria and yeast, is nothing more that what I've learnt from you right now.
    Probably the tea will result full of anti-oxidizing substances and healthy for your gut as well as for your organism's metabolism as a whole. If the taste is good, then, it will do for you even more.
    However, I've never heard of it before, so I can't help you: probably you can find it in Italy though, we have to check out.
    Meanwhile, be sure you don't get poisoned, should you ask for mushrooms and not instead for yeast ! Both are kind of plants, called fungi; however, the mushrooms are larger kind of, with fleshy stem, broad cap, and grow in the forest.
    The yeast is a powderlike form, therefore a much smaller kind of fungus: mould is a fungus as well, if I'm not going wrong.
    Mushrooms come either in edible or in poisonous varieties, so don't make fermented tea out of the latter, should the seller mistake the yeast for a kind of ground mushroom. :D
    glad to stop strict diet, splashed in belly flop? Don't care you're not light, here on English hop !
  • mheredgemheredge Teacher Here and therePosts: 28,081 mod
    Cheese can grow all sorts of interesting mould which I think is fairly harmless @filauzio but mushrooms, much as I love them, I don't know enough about to bravely go hunting for them in the forest. My view is that the more colourful, thd more likely they are poisonous but I'm sure it is not as simple as that.

    Occasionally I have heard of Nepali people who have poisoned themselves eating mushrooms.
  • filauziofilauzio Posts: 1,614 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Your point of view about mushrooms is very wise @mheredge. Actually, though quite empirical, your way of deciding whether they are poisonous or edible is right: the more showy, the more lethal. However the more difficult point arises when you have to pick up mushrooms which apparently seem good to eat, but aren't.
    The most cautious people, in Italy, after picking mushrooms in the forest, get them examined by experts who run this kind of services.
    Even with the delicious boletus edulisit is quite common to fall fatally deceived by a fake kind of it.
    Every autumn we have to confront ourselves with the mushrooms poisoned people toll, whatever the related warning.
    Nearly nowhere else as among the mushrooms' community, criminals can disguise and embody the gentlemen's features, both in appearance and fragrance.
    Their ability to counterfeit could have the most skilful digital hackers pale before them.
    glad to stop strict diet, splashed in belly flop? Don't care you're not light, here on English hop !
  • mheredgemheredge Teacher Here and therePosts: 28,081 mod
    I guess it might be a distant cousin, but the mould that grows on clothes that have been stored in damp conditions is one I really do not like @filauzio. Having left my clothes in a suitcase that was kept in the hotel's store room since last January, when I unpacked my nostrils were assailed with the most pungent odour of mushrooms. I slung all the t-shirts into a bucket of soapy water and these seem to have recovered, but the thick jackets, jumpers and winter trousers are hanging out to air in the hope that this will do the trick. If in a couple of days they still smell musty, I might have to find somewhere to dry-clean the pullovers.
  • filauziofilauzio Posts: 1,614 ✭✭✭✭✭
    I can't but symphatize with you @mheredge. I can imagine what that musty odour should smell like; it seems to me it must be something like the odour old dusty books take when left too long on shelves, without being picked out, opened and read or even briefly skimmed through.
    In the case of old books, I used to put them in the open air on the balcony, making sure I promptly managed to get them inside when the weather turned damp.
    In the case of clothes I acknowledge that the matter should result really frustrating and irritating; I admit I also would find myself almost at my wits end, when having to face such kind of mould. I couldn't explain why, but, in order to eliminate the pungent odour, I think I would resort to some chemicals such as chlorine or maybe oxigenated water, just as a little supplement to the detergent, not to spoil both colour and texture of the cloth.
    Then, as you did, I suppose hanging out in the air the washing should certainly do the trick; especially if you're going to enjoy some windy dry days in a row.
    Then, if anything turns out a failure, you can always rely on laundry shops.
    I'm wondering how useful are those places where you have automatic washing machines which work by coins entered into proper slots.
    Ah-ah, whenever I think of these kinds of machines, I can't help thinking of the hilarious Mr. Bean's episode. :D
    glad to stop strict diet, splashed in belly flop? Don't care you're not light, here on English hop !
  • mheredgemheredge Teacher Here and therePosts: 28,081 mod
    edited September 22
    I've been pleasantly surprised to find how quickly the clothes just hanging near the open windows have lost their mushroom odour @filauzio. I have even been able to replace them in the wardrobe and it certainly doesn't seem to smell when I poke my nose in there.

    I'm not sure what to suggest for books as I have never had any problem so far. I guess even in Nepal during the monsoon when it is very damp, the books have had a chance to dry out again when the the weather changed. I did manage to get a hole in a very nice carpet I left rolled up one summer in an apartment in Kathmandu while I was away. The mould was enough to make a big stain and after I sent it to be cleaned professionally, even they were unable to save it from the damage done by the nasty little microbes.
  • filauziofilauzio Posts: 1,614 ✭✭✭✭✭
    It is curious however how we consider nasty a natural process, @mheredge, when it happens to fly in the face of our conventional idea of cleanness.
    By means of the mould, I suppose The Nature just no much more does than just discreetly claiming its right to encroach upon any human environments and products; they all make up the loot which we, in our turn, have previously usurped and stolen from Her.
    The Nature, as any scrupulous housewife, could, as well, carry stuff infected by humans to a professional who can make them wild again.
    I can figure this green-dressed mistress sniffing at the aseptic, perfumed of detergent carpet, who, just holding it at distance with stretched arm, enters the shop and asks for a healthy three-layers cover.
    The first layer being a soft bed made of pleasantly smelling mould.
    The second one a dusty nutrient pasture for mites.
    the third one, a population of thriving bedbugs and fleas.
    The wildness' revenge has finally been fulfilled.
    glad to stop strict diet, splashed in belly flop? Don't care you're not light, here on English hop !
  • mheredgemheredge Teacher Here and therePosts: 28,081 mod
    You should have seen how careful I was taking my lovely Afghan carpet to the carpet shop to get it cleaned @filauzio . I was so fearful of contaminating my friend's other beautiful oriental carpets. I wrapped it in several layers of plastic to ensure the bacteria did not have a chance to attach itself anywhere else.

    Seriously though, I don't think it was the bacteria that ate away at the carpet but maybe excessive cleaning, though if he was a true professional, I would have expected more care. I have one very old little prayer rug from Turkmenistan which has an ink spot on it. Somehow it adds to the charm and there's no way I would try to remove it.


    One of the biggest disadvantages of when I had an apartment in Kathmandu was when I used to return after two or three months away during the rainy season, it was that everything stank of mould and it took a while to clean everything and air the place. One time was really bad when my upstairs' neighbour had his balcony fill up with water and the water then seeped through the wall, making everything in my groundfloor bedroom really damp. Ugh, I still shudder at how bad it was that time.
  • filauziofilauzio Posts: 1,614 ✭✭✭✭✭
    You have a wise point here, @mheredge, I agree with you.
    I have a friend that formerly used to be the chief seller in a carpet shop; he told me that carpets can be very valuable; he referred mainly to the Persian craftworks; he spoke about valued smooth fabrics and arabesques.
    Therefore, before handing out your carpet, I think you should warn the professional cleaner to be scrupulous.
    Whenever it happened I found myself in the same situation as yours: as saying on the horns of a dilemma, whether to resign myself to get a few enduring spots on it, or get the whole carpet eaten away by a cleaning treatment as light and careful as a steam roller can be, I've no doubt.
    I wouldn't like a cleaned though worn-out spotless leopard. I prefer spotted hairy both leopards and carpet... or carpets made of the leopard's spotted fur.

    Water seeping from the ceiling should be the worst nightmare you could ever face, I agree; it's even likely to get you sleepless, the extent it's progressing turns out inexorable.
    glad to stop strict diet, splashed in belly flop? Don't care you're not light, here on English hop !
  • mheredgemheredge Teacher Here and therePosts: 28,081 mod
    I woke up one night to the noise of water plopping onto the carpet in my bedroom @filauzio. I got a bucket to catch the drips and by morning the bucket had several inches of water in the bottom. Bot only did I have a leak in the roof, but my outside drain was blocked and had made the wall so wet that I had to leave it all to dry a couple of months before I could get it replastered. I had to camp out in my living room in the meantime.
  • filauziofilauzio Posts: 1,614 ✭✭✭✭✭
    The noise of plopping water must be very irritating @mheredge , especially when everything surrounding you is put to sleep, and the silence in the room is complete; apart from beating-the-seconds of this sort of frustrating water-clock.
    Still, when comfortably lying under your bedspread and sheet, I suppose you always tend to do your best at deliberately overlooking anything likely to startle you to your feet.
    Therefore, in your subliminal consciousness, perhaps you were just dropping some milk into your coffee, or maybe the noise came from the final dripping of a warm shower you had been taking.
    Certainly though, when the alarm and instinct to lessen as much as possible the damage grasp your senses, any lazinesses get definitely overwhelmed, and you put off your sleep to an undefinite time to come.
    Then you realize you have to grapple with the nightmare straightaway; your limbs turning out still stiff; your muscle fibres offended by such a rush of wakening blood; without even the soothing pleasure of a hot cup of coffee.
    However, I think that in the middle of the night, whatever problems and emergencies don't really feel in their entire gravity: there's always some nebulosity in your mind which is like a hang-over of interrupted sleep.
    It takes a fully rest and daylight for your wits to get their guard up and evaluate the damage and decide how to face and solve it successfully.
    glad to stop strict diet, splashed in belly flop? Don't care you're not light, here on English hop !
  • mheredgemheredge Teacher Here and therePosts: 28,081 mod
    There is nothing worse than a dripping tap @filauzio. You can understand how the sound of this can be used to torture prisoners and turn them into gibbering lunatics.
  • filauziofilauzio Posts: 1,614 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Yes, you're right @mheredge. The point of vantage the torturers have upon their victims is the time: they can act at their leisure, have coffee break, have time for snaps between sessions of torturing and finally go to bed.
    However, before leaving the torments' chamber they perform the ultimate mischievousness which unveils the demon beneath the common plain evil official: they turn on the tap, only just enough to let dripping water, resulting a maddening sound like that of a death bell tolls.
    They know that the drop, given enough time, of which they have plenty, eat away the rock.
    Therefore the maximum gain with the minimum effort.
    glad to stop strict diet, splashed in belly flop? Don't care you're not light, here on English hop !
  • mheredgemheredge Teacher Here and therePosts: 28,081 mod
    edited October 3
    Drip, drip, drip

    @filauzio, when someone is nagging someone to do something, they can sound like a dripping tap.
  • sammanisammani Posts: 314 ✭✭✭
    I have heard that a billon of good and bad Bacterias exchange when it is kissed.so there is a risk when you kiss someone.
  • mheredgemheredge Teacher Here and therePosts: 28,081 mod
    Hahaha and add to this the risk that the person you kiss might turn into a frog @sammani!
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