The pear’s downfall

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Abel the Deadpan Yardman cuts the pear down to size.

WHEN WE MOVED to the Hacienda in 2003, there were a few trees on the property — a fig, a loquat, a peach and God knows what else.

As a housewarming gift, the great Al Kinnison surprised me with a load of fruit trees he’d purchased in Uruapan in La Tierra Caliente. Leaving me no option, bless his heart, I planted them. There was a pear, an orange and something else I still don’t recognize, maybe macademia.

Like other plants I’ve allowed here, they’ve turned on me, become evil, and I’m sick of them. Last month, I had the monster nopal removed. Today, it’s the pear that just this past summer started dropping a colossal quantity of fruit which I had to scoop up and dump into the ravine down the street.

I mentioned the problem recently to Abel the Deadpan Yardman, who said he would happily remove the pear. According to him, if you cut it into pieces and let it dry about five years, it makes stupendous firewood.

He arrived this morning with a wheelbarrow and machete, nothing more. I offered him my big pruning saw, which he used instead of the machete. After downing the pear, he proceeded to machete it into smaller pieces.

This has come with a price to pay. My child bride was quite angry in spite of my having told her previously that the pear had to go. Abel’s arrival with his machete and wheelbarrow caught her by surprise.

If she had her druthers, the yard would be limb-to-limb fruit trees of every imaginable variety. My druthers would leave us with a parking lot of stone and concrete. We’ll have to settle on a sweet spot in the middle.

In a few weeks, workmen will be removing more grass from the yard and installing stone and concrete. A part of that will entail removing the peach tree, another trash-tossing pendejo, which abuts the Jesus Patio.

I have told her this too, but I will have another sourpuss spouse on that not-distant day. And then it will blow over. Peace will reign.

New Image

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(The Unseen Moon has a new face. Hope you like it.)

Accidental hippie

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Hacienda pear.

I CAME OF age in the 1960s, heyday of the hippies, but I never was a hippie. Didn’t suit my personality.

So it feels strange now that I am harvesting organic pears, tons of them, more pears than we can easily dispose of.

We don’t do anything to make them organic. We don’t fertilize with donkey poop. We don’t light incense. We don’t smudge. We don’t howl at the moon on summer nights.

It’s what we don’t do that makes them organic.

We do nothing.

We have a pear tree that is perhaps 25 feet high in the yard. It was already planted when we purchased the property. We also have a sour orange, a peach and a loquat. But it’s the pear that provides most Hacienda fruit.

Some years the peach gives the pear a run for its money, but the peach is unpredictable. Some years, nada.

The pear is steady, reliable.

We pick up and haul away incredible quantities of pears.  We give them to relatives, amigos and acquaintances.

You will notice two things about our pear:

One, it’s not shaped like a pear. Two, it’s butt-ugly. Of course, being butt-ugly adds to its modish allure. It would likely warrant a high price at Whole Foods.

You’d want to buy brie and skinny crackers.

In spite of its shape and a face like Danny Trejo, it’s quite tasty. I ate the one in the photo after snapping the picture.

Felipe Zapata: organic pear farmer and accidental hippie.

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(Note: Photo is the first here with my Fujifilm Finepix F850exr, a sweetheart of a pocket camera with a 20X zoom.)

Living with fruits

WHEN I LIVED in Puerto Rico a million years ago, there was a lime tree in my yard. Whenever I made a Cuba libre, I had only to step outside to pluck a lime.

I don’t drink Cuba libres anymore — and I cannot fathom why I ever did due to their cloying sweetness — but I still live with fruit trees in my yard.

Some were already here when we purchased the lot almost 14 years ago, and some were gifted to us by a friend who brought them up, unannounced, from the tierra caliente.

We have a loquat, two pears, a peach and a sour orange. There was also a fig when we arrived, but it was removed to add a carport. The biggest bugaboo is the peach, which tosses crap on the grass nonstop in summer.

If I had total say, I’d remove the entire lot of them. I’m not a fruit man, but my child bride is fruit for fruits, so there they stay. I would like an avocado, but we don’t have that.

And we’re not gonna.

The sole plus to this plethora of fruit is that if you squeeze sour orange over a bowl of pineapple, yum!New Image

And there’s the organic element. Our fruit is organic, which is to say we do nothing to them one way or the other. It makes me feel like a freaking hippie.