a week without wine in a country that speaks 50% French

SUNDAY_A week without wine


Tunisia is a much more “dry” country than I expected, closer to Algeria than the Levant in terms of culture. In the past week I have sipped wine only once, at a lunch with a progressive crowd; and I drank a demi-cup of beer yesterday with a bunch of expatriots. Alcohol is amazingly expensive here, except for the local wine and beer. Campari is 125 dinars (about $85). Cheap scotch is 150 dinars.

Tunisia is probably good for my health on the alcohol front, but I worry about the quality of certain foods, like milk, which only seems to be available in those cartons that do not require refrigeration. It is nearly impossible to find eggs from properly raised hens. I have no idea what the meat production and vegetable production is like. The local bread is very nice, but most people seem to eat baguettes — very much not their culinary strength.

I am upset at the moment because I have just suffered the crowning blow of meanness to end two weeks of antagonism that I tried to dodge with the most heartfelt gestures. I would adore a glass of wine, but as I do not drink alone… I will drink herb tea from home and think about the many ways I dislike religion.

Lunch was tasty today. The cook is named Maybrouka.


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