Saturday, July 25, 2009


When I was a kid, I really loved to eat watermelons. I would sometimes eat them graciously with a spoon, with all the grace that a boy child could command. On other occasions I would just bite into the red flesh and spit the seeds out, often into the garden, but sometimes in the den.

As one gets older, one grows out of many things, and sadly, in my life, watermelons have been phased out.

This summer, there was a resurgence of watermelons. There seems to be always a tinge of watermelon in my unconscious. When I walk along the street, watermelons pop into my view, and I take notice of them. When I am staying in a hotel, and a buffet style breakfast is served, I seem to be taking more slices of watermelon than usual.

The other day I was pondering this comeback of watermelons in my life. Ostensively, it all started when I chanced upon some watermelons on the night streets during my last trip to China (end of June). The visit reminded me of a novel ("Hometown") by the Chinese writer Lu Xun that I read in my teens. In this novel, there is a beautiful description of the watermelon field.

It must be the connotations of nostalgia and forgotten psychology that kick-started the chain reaction. I am yet to pin down the significance of watermelons in my life.

Watermelons on the night street.


Utako said...

The Japanese articles of July 5th and 6th about a watermelon shop in Shanghai were funny. A man was working hard in the night shop, on the other hand, the father was sleeping soundly in the bed setting on the front street. The next night, say, the mother was sleeping in it ! They looked like comical scenes in recent admirable Chinese films.

My grandma was good at growing watermelons. She turned their faces toward the sun many times a day. We often got monster fruits.

Watermelons keep explosions to themselves in appearance, but the flavor is delicate and sweet. I love watermelons very much.

Anonymous said...

Nice remembrance.My brother always spit out the seeds of watermelon on me.Why do the boys do that?I'll buy a few pieces of watermelon on my way home.If I had a big refrigerator,I would buy a whole one.

Anonymous said...

Interesting, I have been drawn to eat a lot of watermelon lately too. Instead of eating them with a spoon or face first, I always used a knife and fork and cut them up into neat little squares.