Friday, October 26, 2007

Obsession with Guavas

October 21

My toes grip the smooth brown bark as I shrewdly scan each branch of the tree. Eyes widening and mouth watering, I see the first one...a plump, juicy guava! Within moments, I've climbed within arms reach and snatch it. Guava after guava I pick with the delight of finding a treasure behind each leafy branch.

From the ground I hear Liz call that we have enough, and I yell back, "Just one more"...which turns into 2...and 3...4...5,6,7...

"Esther! We have plenty for a fruit salad. Come down!"

Sighing, I start to reach for the branch below, when I suddenly see it. The most beautiful guava I've seen yet, hanging perfectly in all its glory, sun reflecting off the sheen of its yellowish-green skin. Liz's voice becomes faint as I climb higher and higher, trying to get closer. I pull my skirt up to just below my knees so I can spread my legs apart enough to climb.

It is hanging at the very end of the branch and I try jiggling it off. After practically jumping up and down on the branch, the stubborn guava is still hanging strong. I walk out a few inches and try to reach out, quickly realizing that it is much too far for my arms. Grabbing a stick I try to poke it. Each poke sends it swinging back and forth, but not down.

Ignoring Liz's pleas to leave it, I grab the rake. Nothing is going to stop me from getting that guava. Being hard to get makes me want it all the more. Again and again I reach out with the rake trying to catch it on the stem, until my wrist is swelling from the weight. I sit on the branch for a minute, resting as sweat runs down my face and neck. I'm just not close enough! I study my scratched arms and the small skinny branch...thinking...Physics class. I imagine Mr. Byers standing at the black board drawing an elephant's foot and showing how the heel of a woman's shoe has more pressure than an elephant's foot. So I could be as heavy as an elephant and still stand at the smallest part of the branch as long as my weight is distributed over a large enough area...Never underestimate the importance of school! You never know when you might need it, like when trying to pick a guava.

Gathering my courage, I slowly lay my whole body down flat on the branch and start scooting out farther and farther, inch by inch, my eyes riveted on the guava, imagining the first juicy bite. Every muscle taut, holding my balance, I am close enough to reach out. Carefully, with my legs wound tightly around the bending branch, I let go with one hand and go for it. I feel a rush of exhilaration as my fingers close around the smooth round fruit and yank it off, almost falling from the movement. Looking at the guava, I feel a grin spread across my sweaty face, eyes sparkling with excitement. There's nothing better than a guava....


  1. Say you mentioned that you were going to make guava sauce the other day, how did it turn out? I don't remember seeing a recipe for that in your recipe file for Family and Consumer Science class!

  2. Hey Sarah- It's me and Launa and Meghan- we are getting ready for vespers by eating some really yummy food and just relaxing... I got two phone calls from J Stuart this week- he is alive and well grading papers and making teaching plans. Hey I love Guavas!! Save some for me:) We might send you another package soon. We are praying for you... There is a school of midwifery in Ashland so I'm looking into it... Love ya!
    Lisa Hulse

  3. Yeah physics! I took it from Al though... It's hard to imagine weather to sweat in. It's really cold here. Winter is definitely on its way. I miss you. Hope you have a good day.