Friday, March 14, 2008
Ninja-ing lychee fruits
In Mozambique, it’s not stealing if you see fruit on the ground under a tree in your neighbors yard and take that fruit. If you take it off the tree, that’s stealing. Also, the word ‘ninja’ is synonomous with ‘thief’ so if someone steals and you shout ‘ninja’ in the street people will know what you mean.During training my classmates and I were perpetually teased by the prospect of the impending fruit season. Most of all was the lychee fruit, perhaps the most delicious of fruits and also, as it turns out, elusive for us. As training was drawing toward a close, the lychee were ALMOST ready and my 4 classmates and I all knew and loved lychee and were driven into a lychee fever. Walking to our group sessions we would pass private yards with big trees with ripe red lychees hanging, but in the market no lychees were to be found. We were jones-ing so bad and, well, we did what we had to do, once in broad daylight and at other times in the cover of the night. Once we got back to someone’s room to gorge ourselves on our stash we’d always reach the bottom too quickly no matter how many lychees we ninja-ed, and we’d be left wanting more, which is how it should be for a fiend. During the last week we could finally buy them in the market and that I did, I ate a ton of them. It was a happy time for me.