Arugula: Our favorite mystery cruciferous topping

Posted on Posted in Europe travel

Rocket and rucola

 

Everyone loves arugula. Even cooler than kale, the healthy topping is on Trader Joe’s pizza, underneath fine cuts of meat, stacked on sandwiches, and tossed on everything in between.

But what is it?

The website medicalnewstoday.com defines arugula as a ” lesser known cruciferous vegetable that provides many of the same benefits as other vegetables of the same family, such as broccoli, kale, and Brussels sprouts. Arugula leaves are tender and bite-sized with a tangy flavor.”

The leaf is well known to Europeans for its health benefits, and is found on menus around the Continent, but just not under that name. The same vegetable is known to the British as “rocket,” for example, and in Italian as “la rucola.”

Americans tend to identify Italian foods by their Southern pronunciation, due to the massive immigration from the Italian South in the late 1800s and early 1900s.

Prosciutto? “Pro-zhut” in much of America. Capocollo? “Gabagool” in Rhode Island delis, at least. Hence, the Southern pronunciation of “la rucola” as “ ‘a rugula” is favored in the Americas.

However you pronounce it, you’re bound to find it disguised under other names at restaurants around Europe.

Here’s a refreshing salad recipe using rocket in the U.K

Ingredients: 7oz feta, lemon juice, 2 crushed garlic cloves, a handful of flaked almonds, a bag of mixed rocket, spinach and watercress, a drizzle of olive oil, the seeds of two pomegranates, salt and pepper.

Put the feta in a shallow dish, squeeze over the lemon juice and scatter over the garlic. Leave to marinate while you prepare the rest of the salad.

Toast the almonds under a medium grill until lightly browned, then leave to cool. Cut the pomegranate in half and pop the seeds out into a bowl by bashing the skin with a spoon.

Toss together the rocket, spinach and watercress in a large salad bowl with the olive oil, and salt and freshly ground pepper. Crumble in the marinated feta, and scatter the pomegranate seeds and toasted almonds over. Serve immediately.

Cavalry combines the best medevac insurance with travel insurance benefits such as trip cancellation, trip interruption, lost baggage, primary medical expense coverages, and more. Cavalry is powered by Redpoint Resolutions, a medical and travel risk security company owned and operated by special operations veterans and physicians.

Redpoint covers almost 10 million people worldwide and has evacuated clients from all seven continents.

Experience the heart of Provence on two wheels

Posted on Posted in Europe travel

Cycling the South of France

Credit: John Moretti

Ever since the 1989 best-seller by Peter Mayle, “A Year in Provence,” the villages of the Luberon in the South of France have been a five-star attraction for North Americans. It’s famous for its delicious melons, approachable rosé wines, and bucolic hilly landscapes best experienced by bicycle.

Credit: John Moretti
Cavaillon melons / Credit: John Moretti

Cavalry Elite Travel Insurance partners Butterfield & Robinson are experts in this part of France, and provide a suite of bicycle tours to make the most of this pastoral and culinary paradise.

On the six-day “Provence Luberon Biking” tour, expect views of the Rhone River and its famed vineyards, the limestone valleys of Les Alpilles, guided tours of Vincent Van Gogh’s last residence, and picnics in the Vaucluse Mountains.

On Day 4, you will pedal through Mayle’s old stomping grounds, through the villages of Gordes, Roussillon and Lacoste. This is the heart of the Luberon, and its hills and valleys are a dream destination for the cycling connoisseur. It’s a challenging but picturesque 100-mile day, and an experience to remember for a lifetime.

Cavalry staff have their own fond memories of cycling the Luberon:

Cavalry combines the best medevac insurance with travel insurance benefits such as trip cancellation, trip interruption, lost baggage, primary medical expense coverages, and more. Cavalry is powered by Redpoint Resolutions, a medical and travel risk security company owned and operated by special operations veterans and physicians.

Redpoint covers almost 10 million people worldwide and has evacuated clients from all seven continents.

Redpoint’s Laurie Nahigian completes her 20th Boston Marathon

Posted on Posted in Fundraising

Soaking wet shoes, but $250K for cancer research

There was freezing rain falling from the sky for the first time in at least ten years. The temperature on the course was in the 30s. Everything was soaked, but Redpoint’s Client Services Director Laurie Nahigian finished her 20th consecutive Boston Marathon despite the wicked weather.

“I wore a poncho for the first 10 miles but it was so windy it was like I had a parachute on,” Laurie said. “My shoes were soaking wet the entire run.”

Laurie was less concerned about a personal record, but rather the fundraising goals of her and her team, the Dana-Farber Marathon Challenge (DFMC), which has already raised more than $5 million for critical cancer research this season. The team directs 100% of funds to the Claudia Adams Barr Program in Innovative Basic Cancer Research. Laurie has raised almost $14,000 and the dollars are still coming in.

The memory of those who have fought the disease and their families is what drives Laurie to raise tens of thousands of dollars for the DFMC every year, and to finish this grueling 26.2 mile slog in the frigid temperatures.

“For the last 12 years, I’ve had a tradition with my Patient Partner where I carry a special coin from Hopkinton to Boston and when I see her family at mile 25, I give it to them,” she said. “My hands were so cold I couldn’t go into the teeny pocket in my tights to get it, so her mom had to. It certainly added some comic relief for the other friends and spectators who brave the weather to support us.”

Despite a calf cramp in that final mile down Boylston Street, Laurie made it to the finish line with a remarkable time of 3:35. But more impressive is the $250,000 she has personally raised over the last 20 years. “That is what I am most proud of.”

Cavalry combines the best medevac insurance with travel insurance benefits such as trip cancellation, trip interruption, lost baggage, primary medical expense coverages, and more. Cavalry is powered by Redpoint Resolutions, a medical and travel risk security company owned and operated by special operations veterans and physicians.

Redpoint covers almost 10 million people worldwide and has evacuated clients from all seven continents.

Why are there two Monacos on an Italian map? European city names explained

Posted on Posted in Europe travel

Smoky bay, black pool and merchants’ harbor

Monaco

There’s a funny idiosyncrasy on Italian maps: There are two Monacos. One is a principality on Italy’s northwestern border, the other is Germany’s third-largest city.

The reason is simple. Monaco means “monk” in Italian, and both of these places were once known for the hermits who inhabited them.

The independent city state of Monaco, sandwiched between the Italian Riviera and the Côte d’Azur, may be known these days for its casinos and yacht parties, but back in the 6th century B.C. it was known for the loners who lived in what was then considered the middle of nowhere. So the Greeks gave it the name Monoikos or “solitary house.” (Mono = one or solitary, ikos = house). This word became monaco in Italian.

Munich

Meanwhile, the Bavarian capital known as Monaco in Italian was the site of a Benedictine monastery. The Germans honor those founders by calling it “monks” or München. The original name in Old German was Munich, which of course remains the name in English today.

In much of Europe, naming a city for the people who founded it was pretty common practice. Paris was named for the Parisii tribe who built that city on the Seine. Rome was named for the legend of its first king, Romulus, who along with his brother Remus founded that city on the Tiber.

Paris

Even more common was naming cities for the water that drew settlers there in the first place.

(more…)

Even on vacation, Redpoint medics are busy treating travelers

Posted on Posted in South America travel

Bee stings make for a busman’s holiday

Redpoint paramedics take vacations, too. And more often than not, they end up medically assisting other travelers in need, just as they help Cavalry clients while on duty.

A Redpoint medic and his wife were on vacation in Costa Rica and decided to take a sunset cruise. As the catamaran neared the shore of an island off the coast of Tamarindo, the boat’s staff began tossing fruit rinds overboard. That seemed to have attracted the unwanted attention of a swarm of bees.

(more…)

Cavalry reimburses $10K for canceled bike trip in Vietnam and Cambodia

Posted on Posted in Asia travel, reimbursements

$10K tour of temples canceled

A Massachusetts couple were preparing to leave on an eight-day cycling trip in Vietnam when the husband heard some bad news. During one of his yearly check ups, he was diagnosed with a serious metabolic disorder. His doctor told him he would not be able to join his wife on the trip.

He had to miss out on a cycling adventure that visited centuries-old Khmer temples, local fish farms, as well as a luxury cruise down the Mekong River. He also had to forfeit $10, 495 in non-refundable trip deposits.

As a Cavalry comprehensive travel insurance client, he filed a trip cancellation claim, and Cavary reimbursed him the full amount.

Cavalry combines the best medevac insurance with travel insurance benefits such as trip cancellation, trip interruption, lost baggage, primary medical expense coverages, and more. Cavalry is powered by Redpoint Resolutions, a medical and travel risk security company owned and operated by special operations veterans and physicians.

Redpoint covers almost 10 million people worldwide and has evacuated clients from all seven continents.

Cavalry reimburses $33K for canceled Southeast Asia biking trip

Posted on Posted in Asia travel, reimbursements

Last-minute surgery cancels trip to Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos

A husband and wife were preparing for a two-week cycling trip in Vietnam, Cambodia in Laos when they received the alarming news — a week before they were set to depart — that she would require an emergency surgery. They would be unable to take the trip, her doctor said.

Apart from missing out on an opportunity to pedal through quiet rice fields, visit forbidden cities and imperial tombs, and take part in Vietnamese cooking classes, the couple also had to forfeit a staggering $33,000 in lost deposits and non-refundable airline tickets.

As comprehensive travel insurance policyholders, they submitted a trip cancellation claim and Cavalry reimbursed them the full amount.

Cavalry combines the best medevac insurance with travel insurance benefits such as trip cancellation, trip interruption, lost baggage, primary medical expense coverages, and more. Cavalry is powered by Redpoint Resolutions, a medical and travel risk security company owned and operated by special operations veterans and physicians.

Redpoint covers almost 10 million people worldwide and has evacuated clients from all seven continents.

Cavalry reimburses client for airline strike and power failure

Posted on Posted in reimbursements, South America travel

Perfect storm of trip delays

A Cavalry Travel Insurance client was attempting to return from a South American bird-watching tour when he found himself stranded in Argentina due to both a local airline strike and a power outage in his connecting airport in Atlanta.

The perfect storm of a power outage in the world’s busiest airport and a South American labor protest caused the client to spend three extra days in the Argentinian capital, which meant an additional $600 in hotel expenses.

As a comprehensive travel insurance policyholder with Cavalry, he submitted a claim for the hotel expenses and Cavalry reimbursed him the full amount.

Cavalry combines the best medevac insurance with travel insurance benefits such as trip cancellation, trip interruption, lost baggage, primary medical expense coverages, and more. Cavalry is powered by Redpoint Resolutions, a medical and travel risk security company owned and operated by special operations veterans and physicians.

Redpoint covers almost 10 million people worldwide and has evacuated clients from all seven continents.

Redpoint saves client from unnecessary spinal operation in Indonesia

Posted on Posted in Asia travel, medical evacuation insurance

Medical evacuation to Sydney

The client is transferred to a Lear in Bali

A Redpoint Resolutions client, cruising on a yacht off of Indonesia, injured his spine in very choppy seas. He was tossed in the air and landed on the small of his back, causing a compression fracture in one of his lower vertebrae.

The yacht motored into Bali to bring him to a local hospital, where the ship’s crew called Redpoint for advice. Indonesian physicians recommended a highly invasive procedure to permanently immobilize the portion of his spine that was injured.

Redpoint physicians reviewed his information and advised against the operation for the other-wise healthy 36-year-old Australian. Redpoint medically evacuated the client by air ambulance, a Lear-45, to his to his home hospital in Sydney, where doctors confirmed the surgery was not required.

Cavalry combines the best medevac insurance with travel insurance benefits such as trip cancellation, trip interruption, lost baggage, primary medical expense coverages, and more. Cavalry is powered by Redpoint Resolutions, a medical and travel risk security company owned and operated by special operations veterans and physicians.

Redpoint covers almost 10 million people worldwide and has evacuated clients from all seven continents.

Redpoint medical staff assists client injured in the middle of Antarctic Seas

Posted on Posted in South America travel

A slip and fall on choppy seas

Drake Passage

A client was on board a vessel traversing the rough seas between the Shetland Islands and Ushuaia, Argentina, when she lost her balance and was sent rolling across the ship’s deck.

The ship’s staff, trained in first aid, feared she may have suffered a spinal injury, so they put her on a backboard and fitted her with a cervical collar. They then called Redpoint for medical advisory services.

Over a satellite phone connection, Redpoint medical staff performed a neurological evaluation of the patient, via the first responders, and determined that she safely could be taken off of the backboard. The ship still had 52 hours left to cross the Drake Passage before arriving in mainland South America, presenting a number of difficulties for a patient confined to a backboard.

As the neurological and range of motion tests indicated that this was only a muscular injury, Redpoint staff also cleared her to wear a foam collar for the duration of the trip, rather than the much less comfortable, plastic C-collar. She was also able to take muscle-relaxer medication to make the rest of the cruise more comfortable.

In Ushuaia, she was evaluated at a hospital and was cleared for travel back home.

Cavalry combines the best medevac insurance with travel insurance benefits such as trip cancellation, trip interruption, lost baggage, primary medical expense coverages, and more. Cavalry is powered by Redpoint Resolutions, a medical and travel risk security company owned and operated by special operations veterans and physicians.

Redpoint covers almost 10 million people worldwide and has evacuated clients from all seven continents.