I used to be a fruit fiend. Each day started off with a banana, which was then followed by a mid-morning apple, an orange with lunch, and greens with dinner. I even brought fruits aboard every flight to assure that I’d hit my five-a-day requirement while venturing into different time zones. All was well on the nutrition and fiber front until I lived in Vietnam.
Returning home to waxy American fruits after consuming the freshest, ripest, sweetest mangosteens, sugar apples, and mangoes for a year was heartbreaking. The grass wasn’t just greener on the other side, it was tastier too.
Modern American agriculture mostly depresses me, but sometimes there are sparks of hope. While driving home to Los Angeles from The Bay, I got excited about fruits for the first time in a very long time.
Dotted all along the 152 highway are dozens of fresh fruit stands selling beautiful, perfectly ripe produce. As you can imagine, this stretch of highway smells unbelievably sweet. The Astronomer and I pulled over at Melesio S. Fresh Fruit to scope out their wares.
The freshly picked cherries ($1) and strawberries ($2) tempted us the most. We purchased a basket of each, washed them in a nearby sink, and dug into them as soon as we got in the car.
Enjoying freshly picked fruits at their peak of ripeness must be one of the greatest pleasures ever.