It burned my finger, forcing me to drop it back into the bag to wait for it to cool. Impatient, I picked it up again, and when the heat became too much I put it between my teeth, blowing out to speed the cooling process. A few seconds later and the soft yellow-brown flesh succumbed to my bite. the caramelized edges crunched slightly and I swallowed through my smile.

They were perfect. Ten LD of perfection. Roughly 16 cent for sweet plantains hot from the metal bowl of palm oil nestled amid white hot coals.

Hot plantains are among the things I’ll miss when I leave here in a little over a week. Sweet plantains and wheelbarrows rolling down dusty streets hiding limitless surprises in their metal depths. I’ll miss strangers letting me hold their babies simply because the child smiled and I asked, and eating fresh mangos plucked from a tree – sugar-sweet pineapples taken straight from their bushes. I will miss colorful lappas on sale for 125 LD and the easy smile and soft laughter of people simply because I said, “e mama” (thank you in kpelle).

That says nothing of the people…nothing of the kindness and laughter and sometimes frustration that has greeted my time here.

Of course there are things from home that I anticipate (a lot of it food related), spinach salad with sun-ripened tomatoes and bacon. Hot water that flows from pipes with only the turn of a knob and ever-present electricity that does not succumb to the gasoline thirst of a generator. Transportation options and the absence of malaria.

That says nothing of the people…nothing of the love lavished on me long-distance and the embraces I look forward to melting into.

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1 Comment on pineapples and plantains

  1. Linda O'Dell says:

    Can’t wait to see your lovely face and hear your wonderful stories!

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