March 19, 2008
My fingers are sticky.
I've spent the past hour eating oranges. Two oranges, to be exact. And perhaps indulging would be more accurate.
The first one I devoured in a matter of seconds, just moments after coming home from the store. My bags of groceries still mostly unpacked on the floor, I tore into the bottom of one and pulled them out: oranges. Cara Cara navel oranges, to be exact. From Venezuela.
I'd heard rumors and wanted to see for myself, so, with a quick swipe of the knife I revealed what the sign at the store had promised: pink flesh. Pink! Glossy, tiny little sacs straining with sweet citrus.
I took my first bite.
Forget blood oranges and mandarins and Clementines and plain old orange-oranges. THIS is an orange. My teeth pressed into the rosy flesh, bursting through the skin. Sweet juice squirted into the air hitting me on my nose, running down my lips around my chin and along my neck. The whole fruit disappeared in seconds and I instantly wanted more.
I took my time with the second one. Cutting it in half, then slicing it into perfect pink rounds. The juice was all over by this point. I licked my thumb and was surprised by the taste. Grapefruit? I sniffed a slice. Orange. Then I licked the rind. Grapefruit! I bit. Orange again. Incredible! Even the thick pith coating the inside of the rind is sweet--chewy, juicy, and pleasant with hints of something earthy. Like a mushroom, almost. A sweet mushroom.
I have one orange left and I'm my mouth is already watering for more. I lick my lips and roll the heavy fruit around in my hand. I'll wait until tomorrow, I think, as I place it back in the bowl. I make a mental note to buy more.