Sunday, April 18, 2010

Why do bananas all ripen at the same time?

I have these banana trees outside my kitchen window. For weeks I was watching one particular hand of bananas grow bigger and bigger, and a week ago the gardener took it down and presented it to me. He also accidentally chopped down that tree, but that's another story. I guess as he didn't have a ladder to reach the bananas, he showed initiative by coming up with a cunning plan to get them. Siobhan researched banana milkshakes, I hauled out my best banana bread recipes, but the bananas remained too green to use. We had to wait for them to ripen. My housekeeper placed them in a big dark box last Thursday. When I peeped into the box today, they were all ripe, ready to be eaten immediately. It was an enormous hand of bananas, there have to be close on 100 bananas there. At home it's only Siobhan and I and seriously, there are so many banana bread loafs you can bake and banana milkshakes you can drink. Why did they all have to ripen at the same time? Couldn't some of them be original and creative, and ripen later on in the week?

Problems are a bit like bananas. They all arrive at the same time. They aren't considerate and don't spread themselves out a bit so that you have time to solve each one independently and give it the thought it deserves. No, that would make life too easy for you. Like bananas, your problems all ripen and arrive at the same time.  They're also a helluva weight to carry on your shoulders.   If you have problems at work, or lots of stress, you can be sure that you'll have problems at home and your kids will play up. It's a bit like a chain reaction. Someone up there has a wicked sense of humour.
Anyway, there's nothing I can do about all my bananas ripening at the same time, and there are some problems you can solve, and others you just have to learn to live with, and cope as best you can. Those banana problems are out of your control.

This week, first week back at school, and the week has just flown. It doesn't matter if you have three children and they all live in different countries, when one gets a problem, the others will all present you with their problems. It's Murphy's Law. Worrying about them does make time fly, and everything else which would normally be stressful, seem minor in comparison. That's the positive I guess.

I've had a few good reviews of The Case of Billy B on and that makes me feel great. My new book, Not Telling, is chugging along nicely and is starting to get very exciting. I literally can't wait to see what's going to happen next. My protagonist has taken control of the keyboard and I'm struggling to keep up with her. She's gone off in directions I wouldn't have envisioned in the beginning, but it's all good. I'm having fun and honestly, it does take my mind off all those bananas ripening at once.

Siobhan went hiking this weekend up to Mandara Hut on Kilimanjaro and is now all fired up to do a level two climb in November. She's arrived home exhausted and fallen asleep on the couch. I have to wake her up soon as I know she has Geography homework and she'll want to eat dinner.

We've managed to get a rowing machine and it's changed our lives. We row 100 rows before walking into the kitchen and on and off all day when we think of it. Hopefully, we'll be slimmer and trimmer for our big overland trip to Cape Town in June, which reminds me. I need to start planning that.

My roast lamb with lemon and rosemary smells divine, so I better check up on it. Have a great week ahead!

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