Saturday, November 24

Persisting Down

We have had rain. More rain. Yet more rain. We are not complaining. Rain is good.

We are told, that the rain is landing in catchment areas, so we are hopeful of filling dams. This is largely in New South Wales. I dont believe the Victorians are having such beneficence from the skies.

I recently watched a programme on the dreaded TV about a Citrus Orchardist, who was cutting down, & uprooting his beautiful Orange groves. Because of the drought, they were not allowed enough water to maintain the trees. They could buy water, at an enormous cost, which was far too prohibitive to sustain, either their fruit trees or their livelihoods. I could have wept as I watched this proud man, destroy the work begun by his father, who planted the wonderful trees.

The price they could get at market was the same price they had been getting for 7 years. The markup at Coles, Woolworths etc, was 2000% ! Yes, two thousand percent markup on what they paid the grower.

Then there was all the produce they couldnt sell. It was not the 'desired size'. There were large oranges, smaller oranges, all delicious fruit. All perfect. But they did not fit the size mould, required by the Supermarkets.

Crikey! Think about that! There may be a day coming soon, to a venue near you, when you wont fit the size requirement! You may not fit the colour requirement either! You may be too tall, too short. Too thin, too fat. Too sweet, too sour. Too wrinkled, too smooth. Your navel may be the wrong shape!! Or, like some oranges, you may have none!

What the Hell is the world coming to, when imperfect is null. Nature does not make "perfect" very often. Nature has a place for imperfect. A place for all shapes, all colours, all sizes, all creatures. Nature, basically, is all about imperfect.

What are we teaching our children, when all they see is uniform fruit, vegetables, loaves of bread, buns, biscuits, cuts of meat. Neat fillets of fish. Eggs, all of a uniform weight. Turkeys, neatly sized to suit every gathering.

Is this society encouraging individual beings.. or shaping, in sinister ways, little monsters, who will be future huge monsters for convenience of 'law & order', a society of sheep who will conform, & obey, & bow down to Authority.

I could carry this post on & on. Suggest the fruit be bought for other uses. Suggest educating people to accept the slightly over/undersized. The 'wrong' colours.

Then again, if we can't accept peoples of the world in all these variations, I suppose that is the ranting of a fool. The dream of an idiot.

I cannot help but think, about times of war. People would give anything for fruit- of any shape or size.

I am sure there are better minds than mine, who ponder these matters. I am sure there are many, who could offer some reasons for all of this.

Who will offer any solutions... or is it too late?


Perhaps the rain has turned my thoughts dark. Who knows.

I keep thinking of a friend who went off to some 'Exhibition' & came to visit me, on her return. She was all excited, & presented me with a gift she had got for me. She told me, "I saw this, & knew it would be perfect for you".
On opening the gift, I was speechless, & not in a good way.

Has that ever happened to you?

I looked at the item, buckled & bent as it was, from the packaging, a creation of twisted wire & 'gem stones'.

I stuttered, "I don't know what to say!" It was true. I was so touched that she had thought of me.

I was fond of her. We shared many things in common. I just could not understand why she would have chosen such an item for me.

I felt so awful I got tears in my eyes. I just could not understand what part of me, she thought she had seen in the item.

As I hugged her, & thanked her, I just felt wretched.

We lost touch with each other when she moved to another State. I still wonder why she chose that particular object. I still feel guilty when I think of how I viewed it.

Has this ever happened to you?

Has this turned into a "Frog & Toad are Friends" post??
(My daughter knows exactly how I feel about this. She felt the same.)


All was not doom & gloom today. We got some bargain books!
10 books for $5!! Too cheap not to buy, as American friend used to say!
two books for me, as I still have not read Memoirs of a Geisha, nor God of Small Things. The others, I have a feeling I have read Patricia Cornwell, but I will try it, in case I have missed it. And I will read Good Morning Midnight, as I always enjoy Dalziel & Pascoe.

These 3 books made up the numbers. We had only 7 books so I decided to get these to add to my craft library. After all, a girl can never have too many quilt books, right?
Nor too many Knitting stitches, or Embroidery ideas!

Ahhh, I miss those cold Christchurch nights knitting by the fire. Or huddled by the heater during the day.
Neil Diamond, September Song.
I just flatly refuse to discuss politics today! heheh.


Joke said...

I've had gifts like that. I haven't had guilt like that, though.

Yet another advantage of being shallow.


Jeanette said...

Hi Meggie, im in northern Victoria and the dark clouds are passing by no rain. we hi in the state last Monday 41c. and been hovering around the 30c all week. I saw the same story on a current affairs a little while back Think it was near Mildura, Poor Bugger loosing his crop. we have a few summer fruit orchids 20 mins from me and I and a few others buy fresh fruit nicer tasting than supermarket direct and at a good price. yummy

joyce said...

In our area it's potatoes that must be the perfect size. The small and huge ones get left in the field. Anyone can go and pick them but almost nobody does. We grow our own so we don't. This idea of perfection carries over to humans in the modeling business and movies to a large degree. It's sad.

Mrs. Goodneedle said...

I received such a gift one time, from my sister, I thought she knew me? Did she know me or someone that I became when I spent time with her? Wretched is the perfect word to describe how I felt when I opened that gift... I wish you could share your rain!

Joni said...

Hi Meggie,
I can go along with your rant about imperfect foods. The thing we humans need to get through our thick skulls is that everything in reality is 'perfect', we are the ones who put the judgement of imperfection on these items. Glad to hear you had some rain!

Mike said...

Yes, I have received gifts like that before and I think you summed it up pretty good. Speechless.

Catalyst said...

I loved the "heheh" comment at the very end. I think it says everything you wanted it to. Congratulations!

ancient one said...

So you refuse to talk Politics today? I came running over to hear what you were going to say about the election.

I've had gifts like that. LOL I just thank the person and stick 'em back somewhere. I have this thing (hang-up?) that I cannot get rid of something that someone else gave me.

Tanya Brown said...

Aw, Meggie. Here's a hug: ((( )))

It's a dreadful tragedy, the fellow having to cut down his orange groves and the advent of One Size Fits All produce. Part of the joy of life is the oddness of it, the multi-tentacled carrots and peaches that have grown together.

Your odd, unsuitable gift resonated with me. I have sitting on my bookcase, behind a sculpture, a ... thing ... one of my friends gave me. Her mother had it made, and the friend decided that although she likes it she no longer wants it, so she gave it to me. It's perfectly awful and I don't know what to do with it. I know she treasured it and was trying to be nice, but I wish I'd never set eyes on it.

Your "I don't know what to say" response was perfect, by the way. Honest and open to kind interpretation.

sheoflittlebrain said...

I absolutely loved your last post with all the old family photos:)

I feel bad about the citrus grower too, and your point about only the perfect produce being marketable is a good one. Once when I lived in apple country, we could go out to the orchards and buy imperfect fruit. In this case, huge wonderful apples that were too big for the market!
I wonder about a society that would rather see water go to golf courses and swiming pools rather than growing food.

Angie said...

Just wanted to pop in and wish you a Happy Thanksgiving, dear Meggie!! :D

Josie said...

Hi, Meggie, I have never received a gift like that, but I have given them, and I could see on the recipient's faces right away that it was definitely an "oops" moment. Don't feel bad...!

You know, the strawberry farms in the Lower Mainland here grow the most delicious strawberries I have ever tasted. Ever. This year I tried to buy some at our local supermarket, and I was told they don't sell them there anymore because they aren't "pretty" enough. Instead we have to buy imported strawberries that are perfect looking and taste exactly like wood. And you're right - what kind of a message is that sending?

Leanne said...

Hey Meggie please send some rain our way.

teodo said...

Here too there is much rain.............

Is always emotional when a friend give us a gift.......
and you are a lucky friend.

The pics of last post are so nice that remember me my old family.

Happy birthday to your Brother.

ciao ciao

bluemountainsmary said...

The rain is delicious.

Your post is one I will reflect on.

I have my crochet and knitting out again because the weather is cold enough up here!

CONNIE W said...

I suppose it's the thought that counts, as the saying goes. It's a shame for the orange grower and having to arrive at this sad ending.

Molly said...

The perfect fruit thing is awful when you read about children in other parts of the world going to bed hungry. Josie is so right about the perfectly shaped, but taste like wood strawberries!
What a great book haul you got!

Ali Honey said...

Glad you got rain.

Oh Meggie, don't get me going on the imperfect fruit theme......we have to go through and through the kiwifruit while it is growing,throwing off the imperfect ones then when they get to the pack house months later they grade heaps more out( usually 10% reject rate for us which is considered good! ) There are 32 seperate reasons for a reject kiwifruit. Size and colour being only 2.The ones we throw off in the orchardonto the ground at least nourish the vines.
What have I been doing today....going through the avocado bins as they are picked and pulling out the worst rejects!( we eat them ourselves or give them away! )

Thimbleanna said...

Meggie, your frog and toad thing was so funny. And yes, I've had gifts like that. And I think -- wow, is that what you really think I'm like? How did that happen? Adn on the othe rside of thngs, I'm always hesitant to say "this gift reminded me of you", 'cause what if my perception isn't the way they think at all??? Also, I laugh every time you use the phrase Victorians. Victorians to me are people who lived at the time of Queen Victoria, so I always have to remind myself what you are talking about!

Catalyst said...

Re-reading your orange story above, I was reminded of an article I read about a restaurant run by, I believe, Joel Robuchon in a Las Vegas hotel. He said for his lemon tart, he must have 30 absolutely identical lemons so each slice is the same. As Nero Wolfe would say: "Pfui!"

Christine Thresh said...

You are priceless. I love your rants and I love your sweet stories, too.

Ragged Roses said...

Such a good post Meggie! So true that we are only allowed to celebrate the "perfect" and yet, it is all the variations, the "imperfections" that make life more interesting. Thanks for writing this.
Kim x

Linds said...

Part one... I can't agree more. And our papers are full of a UK couple who are moving to NZ after being headhunted for their expertise, and then not meeting the BMI (Body mass index) rules for suitable immigrants, so the man is there, and his wife is trying to lose weight to conform to the size required. Give me strength. It looks as though the pursuit for perfectiuon is already here. Crazy.
Yes to part 2 and the gift thing too. It does make me wonder why I see myself one way and apparently other people see me totally differently!