Eccentric Life Advice #17: How to Choose Fruit

The metaphorical value of fruit deserves its own, dedicated, article to properly illuminate, so this week I would rather focus on the practicalities of sampling and incorporating fruit into your life. A piece of fruit can be a perfect pleasure, especially if, like me, you are allergic to tobacco and are unable to indulge in such Wilde vices.

First, consider the season. Currently, in this late winter market, we are overloaded with citrus and apples. It is the peak time to sit in a puddle on sunlight and peel all the white strings slowly from a segment of mandarin. Luckily, they are provided by nature in their own wrappers, so they can be enjoyed wherever you find yourself with a craving for sweetness. Apples have a reputation for storing well but I always end up bruising them if I take them on my adventures and they are much harder to share with a surprise companion.

I have a particular love of raspberries and a concurrent respect for my grocery budget, so I buy frozen. While they do not have the delectable soft texture of a fresh raspberry, adding half a cup to my morning porridge cools it down in time to catch the bus and makes my Scottish mother proud. For a more tropical palate, frozen mango has a wonderful texture and avoids the cycle of waiting an eternity for your mango to ripen, only to find it has fermented when you finally cut it open.

My final encouragement would be to buy local whenever you can. The corner greengrocer is one of the great staple treasures of New Zealand and supporting small businesses empowers them to do bigger and better things. Small stores are also more likely to stock by season from local growers, and are almost never run by goblins, so you can feel secure that the hungry thirsty roots that fed your fruit did not soak up any enchantment that would turn you away from your best friend/lover.