"Wading neck deep in a swamp, your revolver is neither use nor ornament until you have had time to clean it" Mary H. Kingsley (1897)


Late Harvest

Last week we picked the last of the mangos from my yard.
These stragglers were still not yet ripe but they faced rotting if left on the tree.
And, sure enough, yesterday the monsoon arrived in earnest.


Fruits Of The Loom



Strange fruits, indeed:


Picture taken in Gujarati School Road, Cochin.

The Mango Mountains


Having left the hotel in Mysore we headed north.

Along the roadside were serried ranks of fruit sellers, each with pyramids of fresh ripe mangos on their carts.

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With so much competition, the vendors were signalling passing traffic to stop and buy.
Using the excuse of it being a good idea to stretch our legs, we decided to make a brief stop
And indulge.

Incredibly sweet, beautifully ripe and dripping with juice: they were delicious.

It took almost a full bottle of mineral water to clear the stickiness from my hands!


Random Harvests


After almost exactly one year from planting, the bananas are ready to harvest.

And ripening.

Each is over 12 inches (30 cm) long.

They are fine specimens and extremely tasty.

Their total weight is more than 66 lbs. (30 kg)


Our mango crop has also been harvested

– only eleven fruits –

But that’s a ten-fold increase on last year.


And the pomegranates are in flower…



Banana Benefits

My banana plant continues to flourish.

Five new plants have appeared around its base.


While above, flower scales open sequentially to reveal row after row of banana flowers.

With many more scales left to open, I am in hope of an ample harvest.

An elegant sufficiency of bananas.



Now You See It?

You will need to look carefully:

Very carefully.

The first green shoot

Not of economic recovery in the West

But of my banana flower in the East.



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Monsoon Surgery



In my small yard, stands an out-house and a few trees.

Monsoon rains have damaged a large branch next to the pomegranate tree.

My man Shaji makes the initial diagnosis. Urgent tree surgery is required.

Sebastian, the carpenter, is called.

He does not bring a saw: Sebastian prefers hammer and chisel.

His surgical assistant is in attendance;

As is Shaji;

And Shaji’s wife, Dalila.


Soon the damaged branch has been neatly excised.

A post-operative audit is undertaken:

Pomegranates inspected;

The check-up completed;

Circulation to the out-house has been successfully restored.