My first morning in our new home and the air is well and truly alive with the sound of … music perhaps? Of sorts. The air is alive with the sound of baby birds squawking urgently for their next mouthful. In every tree, it seems, there is a flutter of wings as desperate parents attempt to pacify their young. The Butcherbirds are already on the marble pedestal demanding leftover fruit or meat or whatever else is on the menu. ‘Sorry guys, I’m all out today,” I say making a mental note to make sure I was prepared for future mornings.
But today’s excitement is all about the lemon trees for me. For as long as I can remember I have wished for a lemon tree in my garden. Being born in Glasgow and brought up in Fife, there was a distinct lack of lemon trees (I may have mentioned it before – ha)- a bit too chilly for all that malarky. In fact, as far as fruit goes, I remember the traditional orange and apple in my Christmas stocking, but that was about it. I guess it was fairly expensive when I was growing up. Seems like a different world now. Anyway back to the lemon trees.
The front of our house has a swathe of land that slopes downhill almost as far as the gates. The land is divided by a meandering and fairly steep driveway. On the right-hand side, towards the bottom of said ‘swathe,’ I discover not one but two lemon trees.’OMG, OMG’.
Some of the fruit has already dropped and looked like shrivelled pumpkins from a halloween long since past with eyes eaten out and gaping wounds for mouths. I feel like screeching with sheer joy. This is such a novelty for me. Not only did we have a garden big enough to ‘explore’ (a garden where you had to don sensible shoes no less), but a garden that had established fruit trees. Peter was less impressed. ‘Everyone’s got a lemon tree. It’s not a big deal.’ Ahem, I beg to differ. I ran back to the house up the grassy incline (oh God, I’m so unfit) and collect my gloves and a woven basket which has now become my official ‘fruit basket’. I salvaged the fruit that was still good. Now I was going to have to figure out what you do with a surplus of lemons. It was quite a responsibility – to make good use of what nature had provided.
Satisfied with my morning’s haul, I washed the lemons and put them in a glass vase in the kitchen. The spoiled lemons would be turned into natural cleaners for the home (more on that in another post).
How exciting – Lemon Trees! You know the old saying, ‘when life hands you lemons … make lemonade’. Well, I’m going to make a heck of a lot more than just lemonade.