Wednesday, 10 October 2007
Bob and the Beanstalk.
We carry a curious collection of 'must haves' on board our boat. I think that we are prepared for pretty much any eventuality as we travel the world.
One of the collections we have is a number of different packages of seeds, I love to grow herbs and salad crops on board. In amongst this assorted selection we have a couple of packs of tomato seeds, especially bred for growing in containers or hanging baskets. I had it partly in mind to have a go at growing them if we stayed in one place long enough......
The herbs that we had on board when we arrived here at Mario's caused lots of comment, and a number of other cruisers caught the growing bug.
Now that brings me to Bob! Bob and his elegant wife Trish, live on Barnacle. They are our next door neighbours. Chatting to Bob one evening he was telling me of the difficulties of growing tomatoes in the mountains, from whence he hails. The short growing season, intense cold etc.
I recognised the glimmer in his eye, this man was a tomato nerd. He was worthy of the choice of my seeds. I know what it feels like to have that primal urge to grow something. I couldn't keep the seeds to myself any longer. It would be unkind , no downright cruel.
Now Bob is a bit of a 'wag', thats what we call a wicked sense of humour in the UK.
He took weeks to decide which packet he would like to raid. Further weeks passed as he selected the ideal sized pot. Markets between the Rio and Guatemala City were searched for the perfect container.
Good natured teasing between the boats could be heard in the evenings,
"Got those seeds in yet Bob?"
"Nooooooo, jes waitin' to get the right hoomidity in that dirt".
I knew the time was getting closer for some action when he and Trish returned from one of their road trips with a shovel, okay it looks more suitable for digging snow off the drive in the mountains but I knew! This was serious horticulture.
Excitment mounted as the pot was placed with great consideration of asthetics and climate control on the bow of good ol barnacle. But still nothing.
"Planted those seeds yet Bob?"
"Noooooo, no point in a rushin' things"
Then yesterday evening a call from Barnacle reached me as I nursed a glass of chilled wine in the cockpit.
"I got thos' seeds in"
" Blimey Bob, I'll be watching in the morning- all that preparation they'll be growing like Jack and the Beanstalk!"
" Reckn' you might be right there."
This morning, bleary eyed as I put on the kettle for the first cup of tea of the day I glanced out the portlight, What!!!!
There proud in its isolation stood an enormous green plant draped with juicy red tomatoes.
I always knew I believed in fairy tales.
So there is magic on the river after all! But I just want to know where the cow is I should have in exchange for the five magic seeds that Bob planted. We are still negotiating on who gets the golden eggs from the giants castle.......
Nice one Bob!