Fantasies in Fruitland

Twelve hours in bed. Roughly ten or eleven hours of sleep. Aches in both shoulders. My complains are minor, though. I woke to read news that a church friend has decided to go into hospice at home, following his lingering illness. He is the man whose devotion to the Computers for Kids (C4K) program has made the program such an exceptional success, growing well beyond service to children. Recognizing that the program will require dedication similar in scope—if not equal to his own going forward—he sought out and found people in recent months who agreed to volunteer to assume management responsibilities for the program. I am sorry to learn of the decline in his health, though a man of his age (90+) will eventually confront that reality.


My niece and her mother have spent time with us over the last couple of days, a welcome visit to which I have been looking forward for some time. I wish I had been more energetic, but chemo and its after-effects continue to take its toll. Fortunately, mi novia and my sister-in-law happily stepped in to provide company and entertainment while I spent my time dozing, sleeping, and otherwise behaving like a sick old man is expected to behave. Despite my lack of energy, I have enjoyed our time together. At some point in the not-too-distant future I hope mi novia and I can make the trek southward to visit my niece and her husband, though any such trip will have to take place at times when I can slip away for just a while as my years-long treatments continue. Ach! I wish I could just skip the treatments…but that would be a mistake of unparalleled proportions, I am sure. Oh, well. It is what it is.


Perhaps I will be able to force myself to write some odd fantasy stories in the coming days and weeks. If I could find a talented artist willing to draw/paint images to accompany my fantasy stories, I might be able to produce a series of pieces to appeal both to children and strange adults. I have written quirky stuff, in times gone by, that might appeal to both audiences and that probably do only minor harm to their respective psyches. As I think about old fairytales I recall from my youth, I seem to remember plenty of stories that would be classified, today, as dangerous and harmful to youthful minds. In my opinion, though, the stories are neither dangerous nor harmful but, instead, are valuable tales that have the capacity to expand children’s creative minds. Kids are subjected to far too much protection, I think, when what they really need are opportunities to explore a bit of youthful madness. But what do I know? After all, I forgot to have kids.


If life were as pleasant as it should be, we all would have ready access to fresh, sweet watermelons year-round. That’s really what we need, isn’t it? I relish the idea of waking early and finding a big bowl of cold, freshly cut watermelon waiting for me in the refrigerator. There’s nothing better than a perfectly ripe watermelon to make one’s day begin with a broad smile. The problem, as I see it, is that watermelon season in most of the US is from May through September. That being the case, I have an entire month—at least—to wait for domestically produced, ripe, and sweet watermelon. Watermelons from Guatemala and environs are available, I suppose, but their ripeness is subject to variance; I want truly firm, ripe, sweet, cold watermelon. At this point, I happily would take Guatemalan or Honduran or other “an” watermelon, of course. Ditto cantaloupe. But I recently have had imported cantaloupe that was a far cry from ripe. I don’t mind having melons that are not quite ripe, but the flavor of utterly unripe melons is patently offensive. While I’m dreaming, I would love a fresh, ripe, cold, papaya right now—drizzled with fresh lime juice. It occurs to me that I might be better suited to live in Central America than in the US south/south-central. I adore fruits of many stripes, including citrus fruits such as oranges and grapefruits and their cousins. Life in Central America, where I could have ready access to such goodness, might be right for me. The heat and humidity, on the other hand, might be problematic. Yet conditioned air in such climates would make me quite comfortable, I suspect. Oh, and year-round fresh, ripe avocadoes would be marvelous. With juice drizzled on top, of course. And sea salt. Oh, yes. I could become non-carnivorous, I believe.


I will not go to church today. Again. I might watch the service, either live or later. But being in the presence of large groups of people who could expose me to potential infections is not high of my list of must-do things today. I missed a church board meeting on Thursday, thanks to another treatment. And I will miss a church service today because of my concerns about infections. I realize I might be using excuses to avoid church, but I really do enjoy the people, so it’s probably not just excuses. One of these days my illness will, I hope, be a thing of the past. And I will then have access to all the fresh fruit I can imagine. Strawberries, blueberries, dewberries, papayas, grapefruit, oranges, bananas, watermelon, cantaloupe…and all the rest. Hmm. It sounds delicious.


About John Swinburn

"Love not what you are but what you may become."― Miguel de Cervantes
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One Response to Fantasies in Fruitland

  1. Meg K. says:

    Thanks, John. I just finished church from home. It was good! Hope you were one of the 6 watching live.

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