(with apologies to Ann Vanderhoof, author of the book "An Embarrassment of Mangoes")
We've been enjoying these crates of sweet juicy mangoes the last few days, and oh man, I know they aren't local and all that, probably burned several forests worth of fossil fuels and caused untold irreparable pollution to get them here, but they sure as heck taste good!
Mangoes remind me of my dad. When I was small dad would buy mangoes in summer, so exotic, I never knew anyone else whose family bought mangoes! Then he would ripen them carefully, and when the time was deemed right, the ritual began. He would peel them and pit them and if we were really lucky we would be the one chosen to chew on the stone. Then he'd put the slices in the blender with ice and sugar syrup he had boiled down and a slug from his coveted bottle of dark Jamacian rum - you've guessed where I am going with this - Mango Daquiries, elixir of the gods!
So I have been thinking of my dad, and wishing he and his blender were here so we could sit out on the patio (ignore the rain for a minute and just run with my image) and sip mango daquiries together in the sun and talk of the cottage and my brother and sisters and my mum and the old dogs and summer memories from years gone by. Maybe we'd pull out the old slide projector and the movie camera and roll out some of those old summer pictures and movies on the white screen in the living room.
I recently read a definition of unschooling that went "Unschooling is like experiencing the best Saturdays you had as a child on an everyday basis". When I think of my kids lives and how I want them to remember things, I think of summer holidays at the lake and memories like mango daquiries. In moments when things seem overwhelming and I am getting grouchy, I hold those memories in my heart and move toward them. Imagine a whole childhood of mango dauquiries? Could you possibly grow up wrong with a head full of memories like that?
I hope one day my kids will look at something as simple as a mango and get flooded with warm fuzzy wonderful memories of being loved and loving fully. What a wonderful life. What an embarrassment of mangoes.