Staying fresh: Imagine buying grapes at the grocery store and being able to keep them fresh for several months. Farmers in Afghanistan employ an age-old method to do just that. It's called gangina, a technique that involves using two layers of wet soil as a container for the fruit. The soil, which is formed into the shape of a saucer, is dried in the sun, and the grapes are sealed inside. The airtight saucer is then stored in a cool place, sometimes even underground. The fresh grapes placed inside the container must not be spoiled, squashed, or broken, or the rest of the healthy grapes will spoil as well.
Tiny fruit: Coconuts, those large balls with the brown shells and the white milk and meat hidden inside, bring thoughts of warm climates and interesting cuisine. But big, familiar coconuts aren't the only variety available. A relative of the coconut is the coquito. This marble-sized fruit is also called pigmy coconut or dwarf coconut, and grows on Jubaea chilensis palm trees that are common in Chile. Unlike the fruit, these trees are huge and can live for many decades. The tiny fruit looks and tastes like its bigger counterpart, but doesn't have milk inside the shell. A coquito can be used in a variety of dishes, including desserts, snacks, and drinks.
Wild chickens: There are feral cats and there are feral dogs, but feral chickens? On the Hawaiian island of Kauai, these wild birds do, indeed, exist. They can be found everywhere, from the beach to the street to parking lots, which is an odd sight for visitors who are accustomed to seeing chickens in chicken coops. According to the locals, these free-roaming chickens and roosters came into existence after two hurricanes in the 1980s and 1990s wrecked the coops. The homeless domestic birds then mated with other wild fowl already on the island, leading to a poultry population boom.
Water tower home: Lots of people make homes out of abandoned buildings, such as old churches or schoolhouses. But a pair of cousins from Nieuw-Lekkerland, Zuid-Holland in the Netherlands, made a unique transformation. They turned an unused water tower into a home. The cousins are Sven and Lennart de Jong, who lived near the tower as children. When the tower came on the real estate market, they bought it, then spent 10 years making it into beautiful living quarters with their own hands. In the middle of the renovation, they both met and married their spouses, both of whom loved the idea. Now, the two couples and their children each have their own living spaces in their distinctive home.