The sense of
wonder that a child has, when every day involves discoveries and
every event occurs for the first time, is gradually eroded with
each passing year. Our childhood experiences leave strong impressions,
helping to form our opinions and tastes, while later on we begin
to trust our memories rather than our senses.
don't like spinach," you might say, remembering how
it tasted when you were young. Yet we should strive to make time
to learn new things, and relearn what we think we know. That way,
we're less likely to lose the joy that comes with doing something
for the first time, when all our senses are heightened and a pleasurable
expectation informs every activity.
In an effort
to recapture that sense of wonder, my mother and I set out to find
new experiences, things that interested us but that we had never
One of the first
ideas that came to mind was to taste fruits we had not heard of,
let alone eaten.
There are over
two hundred varieties of exotic fruits. Many have become more widely
distributed and familiar in recent years, including kiwi, kumquat,
lychee, marula and papaya. On the other hand, some of those endemic
to Turkey, such as muşmula (medlar) or the fruit of the jujube tree,
are still hard to find in North America.
We chose four
new fruits, but were unable to tell whether they were ripe and ready
to eat. The star fruit was watery, and tasted faintly of cucumber.
It was difficult to let go of our preconceived notions and eat these
fruits without seeking the more familiar flavours of those we'd
grown up with. We kept comparing these fruits to the juicy peaches,
crisp apples, and endless varieties of grapes that we're used to.
The most exciting looking one, the dragon fruit, seemed to have
the blandest flavour.
someone who'd been raised eating dragon fruit might say the same
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