Monday, March 26, 2012

The Last Orange

When Steve and I returned from Arizona late last month, we carried a bagful of oranges. Fresh-picked, juicy, fully ripe, straight off the front yard tree of our hosts. Yummmmm!

We were warned some might be dry and there might even be seeds. Apparently in tough years the seedless trees produce seeds in the fruit anyway, trying to ensure survival of the species. It turns out they needn't have bothered with the warning. All were delightfully juicy - the first so much there was juice all over my hands and everything else just from removing the peel. There were perhaps a half dozen seeds among them all.

I was very generous. I allowed both Paul and Richard two each. (Hey, our friends, our oranges!) Richard was encouraged to share one with Brenda, but I never followed up to see if he had. Steve and I did our best to split the remainder evenly. I can have a whole fruit - two carb units - with my cottage cheese - one more carb unit for a total of three for the meal - for both breakfast and lunch. That slows down consumption.

Eventually there was a single orange left. I offered it to Steve, thinking I may have had more than he had by this time. That was two weeks ago. The orange has since shifted places on its shelf, changed shelves a couple of times, and still greets us with its juicy promise each time we open the door looking for something else. I finally decided Steve and I were trying to out-polite each other over this last orange.

This morning, packing my cooler, I'd finally had enough with polite restraint. Out it came. The peels are in the wastebasket, filling the kitchen with the lovely fragrance of orange oil. A zipper-top sandwich bag with separated sections lies in a nook along the inside wall of the Igloo cooler. By 8:32 AM it will be history.


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