Monday, December 1, 2008

Maureen 2: Electric Boogaloo

The son-in-law of my recently departed neighbor called me this morning. I have a ridiculously productive kiwi vine that has overtaken my front porch and he was calling for permission to pick some for himself. I was actually really happy that he called me about this. His mother-in-law, bless her, had been a crazy food hoarder. Her house was always full of cases of past-sell-by date salad dressings and withered vegetables that she'd gotten from her friend at the grocery mart for free or pulled from the dumpster behind the corner bodega. Her last conversation with me, the week before she died, was about me bringing some kiwis around to her, so his request gave me an odd sense of closure to my relationship with his wife's mother.

My late neighbor was a nut. But, as a gardener, she was kind of a good nut to live next door to. She was constantly bringing me fresh tomatoes seedlings that had sprung up all over her yard (yay) and almost moldy bread (bleh) in trade for tiny apples from my tree or cuttings from my roses. I'm only too happy to continue my fruit-giving ways to a second generation of nutty neighbors.

This afternoon I found a sack of oranges on my front porch from the son-in-law's backyard tree. Sometimes being nice has immediate, and delicious, repercussions.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I love free food!

My sister's boyfriend cleans after hours for a fabulous bakery. He called up yesterday to tell me he had manna if I wanted to drive over to get it.

There was a big loaf of bakery bread, and six ham and cheese croissants, (which normally sell for $4 apiece.)

So not only did I have wonderful bread to go with my tasty leftover lentil soup, but the kids each had a croissant as an after school snack, and then one in their lunch boxes today. Plus my husband and I each ate one up as well.

Living frugally is a real sacrifice!

Katy Wolk-Stanley
"Eat it up, wear it out, make it do or do without."