April 12, 2017

About The Bananas...Kind of

It started with the bananas. It always does.

They had been receptive to bananas for a while, my daughter and husband. Me too, if I was being honest. But our romance with the bananas began to fade as did the fruit's once creamy yellow skin.

Eat these bananas soon! announced my husband as if someone in the house must surely still love them. These bananas are going bad! Someone needs to eat them before they do! As if he wasn’t a ‘someone' who could eat them.

I lied and said it was my full intention to make banana bread out of what now looked like October leaves. They were beyond dead; and I trashed them with a wince, thinking of how my mother loathed waste.

A giggle barged into my wince as I thought of a dear friend who often said he was so old, he didn’t even buy green bananas.

The thing they don’t tell you about October leaves-bananas is that they attract fruit flies. And after you toss the bananas, the fruit flies stay…I don’t know why, maybe they’re hoping to resurrect the romance so carelessly tossed away.

This sent me to my local hardware store in search of a fruit fly catcher thingee.

Hardware stores aren’t my favorite place to be to begin with. There are thousands of aisles loaded floor to ceiling with eight million different nails, all set aglow by eerie orange fluorescent lights that buzz in time to muzak while the scent of nondescript timber wafts over my being.

At least that’s how it felt. Maybe that’s why I was so easily distracted by the daffodil bulbs on the aisle endcaps.

How long had I been threatening to plant daffodils? Three? Five? Seven years? Didn’t matter. All I knew is that every year I’d find myself in the backyard with muddied knees and then day-after strained hamstrings from planting annuals for hours when I should’ve planted perennials. Like daffodils.

At ten bucks a bag, they were worth it. I bought them, planted them and dared any neighborhood squirrel to even think about digging them up. I figured they’d shoot up in April or May and from that time forth, I couldn’t wait to wait out the long Wisconsin winter and see my handiwork.

I’m so old I don’t even buy green bananas I suddenly heard my friend say.

Now I’m not old, but as my waste-loathing mother would say: tomorrow isn’t promised to anyone. Just ask Charlie Murphy, Prince Glen Frey, Tray Walker, Chyna, Phife Dawg and…on second thought, don’t ask.

Green bananas aren't a smart buy after all.

Soon enough, the temps warmed and coaxed green sprouts into bursting forth through thawing soil. It was spring in Wisconsin, which meant the warm weather turned to freezing in a day’s time. I beseeched my husband to save my soon-to-be-babies by covering them until the weather would be kind to them. He did.

A few days ago, I felt the time was right and carefully rolled back their covering.

They were surviving and flourishing. I was here to see it; and, I was grateful in a way I hadn’t been in a long while.

But it all started with the bananas. It always does.

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