I told my witchy friend Alberta that I was on my way over with zukes and potatoes from my garden. She said great – in return she'd give me dried horsetail for tea. Um, I said, how does it taste? She said she'd brew me a sample.
Well, it tasted as expected, like the other teas she's offered – eyebright when I was having my double-vision problem (Big Pharma has pretty well fixed that now), and I have a baggy of something else in my cupboard of I forget-what. All these concoctions tend to be bitter and weedy tasting. I suppose some honey would help...
She offered me a taste of something else, that sounded good – poppy-seed & almond 'milk' – but was unpleasant too. So she made me a cup of tea-tea.
She says she drinks horsetail for hair, nails and bones, and her hairdresser has commented on how improved her hair is recently and how fast it's growing. The poppy-seed/almond is for magnesium.
I'm not really into this. I looked up eyebright on the internet (different section than she goes to) and found that it's an antique remedy for eyes, all problems, based on the flower or seed or something looking like an eye.
Her first magical elixir she was pushing was hydrogen peroxide. As a drink. Very diluted. Good for you, good for your pets, good for your plants. Provides them with extra oxygen, you see. I looked it up on the internet and read that yes, it's a bit of a fad these days, but you gotta be careful to make it very very dilute on account of delicate esophagus tissue that you don't want to burn. I think I'll keep it for external use only.
And, if I'd only met her earlier and heeded her advice, I wouldn't have needed the knee replacement – I could have just eaten gelatin and pig's ears. Whenever her gentleman-friend feels a joint twinge, she gets him onto those remedies and he's good as gold in no time. Gelatin is feasible, I suppose though jello is carby (and probably desperately non-organic), but pig's ears? I suppose I should inquire as to how they prepare and ingest them. All I've ever seen is the dried gristly ones sold as dog treats.
But external applications I don't mind. Epsom salt solution on plants – dunno if it helps, but didn't seem to hurt. The neem (I think) mixture sprayed on roses did seem to eliminate the brown bits and make for nice greenery. The coconut and hemp creams seem okay – though they have to be kept in the fridge and are hard...you scrape out a bit with your fingernail and apply it to knee, and it's instant melt and run.
She took be to her “witchery”, a nicely done-up shed at the back of the property, where she has horsetail and other things hanging to dry, and a dozen paper bags of dried (regular cooking) herbs. Cute and cozy and very, well, witchy. She had a couple of new goodies – a cute little witch riding the herb-drying pole and a light-up skull-with-raven. It's already Halloween in the stores.
Sigh. We're a little disappointed in each other: She's witchy-witch and I'm Wiccan (ceremony and theoretical nature-'worship'). But we have fun participating in each other's thing...she takes me to interesting places in the semi-wild and I do seasonal rituals for/with her...
P.S. - Today we gathered pears from the abandoned house next door, I gave her more potatoes and she brought plums, with a promise of apples later - in case you thought it was all practical and edible on my part and weird and dubious on hers.