It’s a big deal. I have stared at them longingly, in pages of magazines, online and at separate aisles in supermarkets. They seemed gorgeous, sweet and promised a taste out of this world. Like a juicy unicorn perhaps.
I wished and hoped. Of course, nothing happened.
I can say I love fruits. I love mangoes (we have mango trees around the house), papayas, bananas, watermelons, honeydews, guavas, pineapples, durians, local fruits that are dimes a dozen. Tangy and sweet. Cheap and tasty. Although you might find most of the fruits in Europe too, with much higher price, the quality and the taste is definitely not the same.
You can try a mango in Thailand and buy one here in the UK and compare.
Spending most of my conscious 30 years near the Equator, I can attest that the climate in Malaysia doesn’t facilitate the nurturing of berries, with an exception of strawberries in Cameron Highlands.
It was a famous local tourist destination because of the altitude, fine, cold weather, tea plantations, strawberry gardens and beautiful scenery. Many boasts of going up and eating the sweetest strawberries. They always have one complaint in common though. Up they went, the berries are delicious. So they bought piles and boxes of it and when driving downhill, all of it turned sour. No one had the correct explanation.
It’s a curse! *tears hair*
I went up to Cameron Highlands once. It was not a pleasant journey. I really had to lie down. I never saw the beautiful things on the television because I was nauseous for 7 hours. When I was younger I suffered an extreme case of motion sickness but with a friend horribly driving up dangerously small curving road, I had no view except the insides of the smelly car. We saw some patches of green grass but the strawberry garden was not part of the place that my friends wanted to visit. I did manage to buy a homemade strawberry ice-cream when we stopped for lunch. I swear it tasted like ice old Felix Felicis.
Although I had many chances of buying myself any kind of berries (though it’s quite expensive) I rather not disrupt my first impression of long kept reputation of berries with my bad choice so I waited for the perfect time like now.
I saw a box of blueberries going for less than a pound and saliva overflowed to my chin. I’ve drunk the juice, tried pastries and jams but I have never tried a fresh blueberry. They beckoned and I have to say that I don’t have much restrain to fight anymore.
So I surrendered.
Oh. My. God. So this is what a blueberry tastes like. It feels like being stalked by a dark, mysterious, handsome man that you worship in your dreams.
But the strawberry came later, after so much thoughts and considering. I have some so far to ignore my fantasies: the luscious bites of the red devils.
It’s exactly what I have wanted strawberries to taste like. I took my time. Slowly and carefully. Wrapping and unwrapping. My tongue squashed the soft, ripe flesh and swirled the insides of my mouth with red, sweet, sticky juice of blooming paradise.
I wonder how a raspberry tastes like.