The road less taken… and duckweeds, mushrooms and coconuts
by, August 7th, 2016 at 03:18 AM (273 Views)
At long last, after many busy weeks, we decide to go out to the grounds for some fresh air last weekend. The grounds are the not so distant football fields and the surrounding areas of the university, where we also had occasional picnics years ago. There is a small creek that runs through campus and some farms and forests beyond.
Calling the guys up before sunrise, it is so different when many others have arrived before you. We bring some corn on the cob cooked the night before, but forget the banana cakes also made the day before. I grab a pair of shoes and run to the car where the others waited as I locked the house.
In the long empty roads, you can speed a little unlike the usual daytime. When there are only a few people and still a bit dark, you feel like you have the crisp, cool air all to yourself (how selfish!) and the parking lots are barely occupied too. There are always young men at the basketball court so early, but in the tennis courts we pass by there was just one pulot (pick up) boy still fixing the boundaries of the shell courts before the players arrive for the day.
Hubby and the children go for a jog in the road around the field. As usual, jogging out is often simply that, a jog out, as if the kids were not taught about warm-ups..? I had my bag and waited on a bench, thinking whether to wear the shoes I brought or not. Deciding not to, after I do a few deep breaths and some standing push- ups at the back of the bench, they are back after one round. The two boys stop, while their papa moves on.
I start to walk on the wet grass. I follow the periphery of the green, green field but not go to the pavement and road where more young people begin to follow the usual counterclockwise route of those who jog or walk. Soon hubby was going back and forth in the grass too, raising arms high and deep breathing. I managed to follow my path on the grass four times. On my second round, I was looking down at the grass—when someone called me by name… it was a sibling’s tennis mate who remembered me—and i hardly knew and expected anyone to know me there now…
There were many species of weeds, some of which I often liked to pull out from the roots at home when I found them. There were esp. carabao grass, wrinkle duck beak, crabgrass, nutsedge and this variety I never got to know in person or by name after all this time. It had small rhizomes that just grow out and out, and bring out a green three-sided erect stem, where at the top is a white round flower like a small ball with three longish grass-like leaves [Now I cannot resist checking out the plant… Called white kyllinga after all.] There was the small crawling weed with small light orange flowers, but I cannot find this at all online. Maybe I can photograph or draw that sometime... Then I saw it, a small white mushroom, with diameter no more than an inch, and about 2 ½ inches tall. I wonder how and why such a mushroom would survive in such thickly-knit grasses. God knows, although I don’t.
On my second round, it was then I noticed there were more of this mushroom after all. As I circled the field getting the feet wet in the dewy grass, I realized there was really more and in one spot abt 5 to 6 feet square, there were about a dozen already, looking like small umbrellas just partly opened. I counted about 2 dozen mushrooms after all, stopping to count after I got to where I started to walk, lest I count again what I’ve previously passed by.
Back to the bench near where we parked, our youngest asked that we get some milk from the store a few blocks away, but still visible from the bench. As we trudged the distance, we pass by an old santol tree, one among those whose fruits just fall every year when no one was interested enough to collect the fallen fruit, or throw stones to let some fall as some children do. We pick a few firm fruits, newly fallen and not turning dark or feeling soft to the touch when a few days old on the ground. Santol season will soon be over, and I haven’t preserved much yet for when next year’s fruits will flood the markets again. I just made my bag a little heavier, but never mind.
We pass by a new cozy coffee shop still closed, but we inquire. The coffee is a bit pricey (I could get an inexpensive cup at the bakery outside 1/16 their price) and just say, Let’s get something elsewhere, and we do: a hotdog sandwich and soy milk in a 7/11 in the other direction.
I make a side trip to a coop where they often have fresh produce—but seaweeds on weekends only. This weekend however, there was none! And I totally forget abt the edible mushrooms I wanted to get also. Oh well, I will see next week again, if we go out near here at all.
There was a breeze and more people too, but about time to go back now. I didn’t want to yet, but couldnt say so either… Thankfully hubby turned the other way in an intersection, and wanted to get some fresh buco (fresh coconut) in the highway after all. The man chopped off the top of one buco in 6 or 7 hacks (I took abt 30 with the blunt bolo at home) and we drink juice from three large nuts. The rest we bring home. Thank You, Lord.
Back at the house, I strive to clean the kitchen some, prepare food which can be cooked a little time later, and go out to fix some old potted plants to replant and weed. Moving some stuff and sweeping, I start to sweat. It's later(r) and hot! Looks like one sheds more sweat (and toxins) back here than I even did there in the grounds. No matter, I have breathed in more O2 I’m sure, and have gotten those electrons (anions) from the grounds…
Now where may the duckweeds be? They are in the creek we passed by again, and under the bridge, which I notice are now growing fast, clogging the waters… But then again I hear these duckweeds in the London canals may be the next superfood yet. That would be great.