If a pamplemousse falls in a forest…?
Swell performed well on her first sea trial!…but I gotta catch up on a few stories from the last month, so here goes the first:
I threw my bike in the bushes and slowly felt my way toward the barbed wire fence. The full moon had yet to rise, but I knew the fruit-laden pamplemousse trees lay just on the other side. I slipped carefully between the wire strands, stepping into the dark orchard.
A few months back, on a bike ride to town, I’d noticed this plot of pamplemousse trees alongside the road. The grapefruit-like fruits lay strewn all over the ground below. Never did I see a soul picking the fruit or tending the land. Every time I’d pass, I grew more and more disillusioned about these poor pamplemousse that grew gloriously only to fall to the ground and slowly rot.
One day I couldn’t take it, anymore. I snuck into the orchard and rescued four perfectly ripe pamplemousse on my way home, loading them into my bag, enjoying mouthfuls of the tart wedges for the rest of the week. I did the same during the following weeks, becoming convinced that no one would care anyway, until one day a tall, pointy French lady came to the edge of the fence as I stuffed a plump yellowish one into my pack.
“What are you doing? Do you know you are on private property? It is forbidden to take that fruit.” She said gravely in French.
“I’m so sorry,” I replied sincerely, “It’s just that all this fruit seems to be going to waste and I thought no one would mind if…” My words trailed off as her scowl deepened. I dumped the bag sheepishly and headed for the fence. “This land belongs to the hotel over there. I won’t report you this time, but don’t come back.” She asserted.
“I won’t,” I replied. “I didn’t think anyone would miss them.”
“It doesn’t matter,” She continued, “They don’t belong to you.”
Over the next few days I mulled over those pamplemousse. Which law was I to respect? Was it a crime to take the forbidden pamplemousse or a crime to let them fall to the ground uneaten?
“Before the French came,” my Tahitian friend told me a few days later, “The Tahitians would have given you all the fruit you wanted.”
… I wandered under the trees in the total darkness, tripping over the fallen fruit and brushing spider webs from my face as I felt blindly for ripe morsels hanging from low limbs. The ‘higher law’ had won out in my mind. Those pamplemousse wanted to be eaten! After filling my pack with fruit loot, I leaned against a thick tree trunk and dissolved into the darkness, the stillness, the silence, the cool night air, and the exhilaration of being somewhere I shouldn’t. A few minutes passed there. I smirked as if the trees were in on it with me. The moon then began to peek over the crater ridge behind the orchard, so as the veil of total darkness lifted, I took a moment to thank the trees, slipped back out onto the road, and peddled slowly home.
sethJune 12, 2010
i had a similar experience with picking passionfruit in goleta. they were growing on a fence on the side of the road, and were all over the ground. i gathered them successfully for a couple of weeks, and then one day the property owner just lit in to me. it’s very odd/unfortunate that people would rather see fruit rot than have someone else get some love out of it.
steveJune 14, 2010
I once read a book which focused on peak experiences. Chap one described the sensations of a burgler who was in the house when the owners returned. He had to remain perfectly still until they went to sleep at which time he made his escape. He later read an article which described so called peak experiences and realized they tracked the psychological and physical experiences of his interrupted burglary. He became an author who wrote extensively on the subject. The world lost an accomplished thief but gained an insightful writer. A fine trade off.
GeorgeJune 14, 2010
Earlier today I posted a thread on sailnet.com titled “Any sailing surfers out there?” One of the members was kind enough to direct me to your blog.
I hope to start a journey similar to yours in November (if my boat is ready by then). I have no set destination and no deadline. My only plan is to find waves and enjoy my search for them.
Take Care :)
P.S. Sweet blog…keep the posts coming.