Lemon tree

I spent a part of this lazy sunday morning plucking lemons out of our lemon tree. Despite harvesting more than a hundred lemons a couple of weeks back, there were enough on the tree to merit yet another plucking session. Green lemons, about to turn yellow, hiding behind the leaves, and with the random thorn here and there. At the perfect stage,? I think, to make pickle.

I started out with the low-hanging fruit, taking care not to get my hand pricked while plucking them. One good thing was that most of them (low hanging fruit) were in a similar stage of ripeness and size, so it wasn’t hard to decide which to pick. Also, while picking, I think I made a “type 1” (or is this type 2 – i’ve never resolved this) error. If i wasn’t sure whether a lemon was ripe for picking or not, I would just go ahead and pick it. Somehow thought the cost of a raw lemon in the pickle was lower than that of leaving it on the tree!

I slowly moved upward while picking. First balancing myself on some stones in the garden, and then using a hook. And no, I didn’t use a crook (thought beating down lemons wouldn’t be too good for the pickle). Finally reached a stage where all pick-able lemons which could be accessed from the ground were safe in the basket. And didn’t have much enthu to go upstairs and then bend down and knock down fruit from there so stopped. Anyways by now the basket was full.

The house smells so good now, with all the plucked lemon in one place in a basket. Already getting visions of the pickle that they’d be made into. Of course, there is still some hard work to be done. I need to get more ingredients, such as fresh green chillies (mom said it’s extremely important that the chillies we put in the pickle are fresh), ginger (again some special variety which is good for pickles), makali beru (a kind of root. don’t know it’s english name), etc. And then the hard work begins for my mom as she sets out to make the pickle!

While picking the lemons this morning, I was amazed at the fact that most unripe fruit are green, and are thus camouflaged by the leaf and hence safe from “predators”. I’m wondering why I hadn’t thought of this funda earlier!

Then, I also wonder why economists use the lemon metaphor to refer to inferior goods! what is so inferior about lemons that it should be considered “generally inferior”? What is the frame of reference these economists use when they term lemons as inferior? Whatever it is, I bet that whoever came up with this funda has never eaten lemon pickle with curd rice!

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