|Maybe why they call our house the|
witch house, but it might be me.
A hundred years ago, there was an orchard on our property and this pear tree is the only tree that is still living. The inside of the tree is completely hollow. A few years ago, it quit bearing and we thought it would soon die, but last year there were hundreds of pears, and this year there were even more. I counted ten on one branch. The little face was there when we bought the house. I kind of like it.
You can't see it in this picture but our mailbox is right next to the tree. Friday night when Bill got home, someone had knocked the mailbox over--or deliberately pulled it up. It was set in a lot of concrete. There is really no reason for anyone but the mailman to be in our driveway. We are at the end of a country road, and even if someone had to pull in the driveway to turn around, they wouldn't get as far in as the mailbox.
Then Monday, I noticed that there were no pears on the tree--not on the ground--not anywhere. I can't help but think that it's somehow connected with the mailbox, but what it really reminds me of is St. Augustine.
There was a pear tree close to our own vineyard, heavily laden with fruit, which was not tempting either for its color or for its flavor. Late one night -- having prolonged our games in the streets until then, as our bad habit was -- a group of young scoundrels, and I among them, went to shake and rob this tree. We carried off a huge load of pears, not to eat ourselves, but to dump out to the hogs, after barely tasting some of them ourselves. Doing this pleased us all the more because it was forbidden.
St. Augustine, Confessions, Book II, Chapter 4
So who knows? Maybe we have a potential St. Augustine in the neighborhood. I guess I will ask the saint to intercede for him--or her I suppose--or more likely, them.
That isn't our only produce mystery lately. About a week and a half ago, we came home and found a bag full of vegetables hanging on our doorknob. Enormous yellow squash, huge zuchinni, very long cucumbers and tomatoes that made me think that if there was something like this on earth, heaven must be very wonderful indeed. I assumed that they had come from our friends who grow enormous vegetables--their daughter won a prize for growing a cabbage the size of small elephant head--and who were leaving town for the week, but when they got home, they said they hadn't left them. Bill asked the man down the street, the great grandson of the man who built our house, whose garden is absolutely perfect in every way, and who had brought us vegetable in the past, but they weren't his either. He did, however, give us a big sack of tomatoes. So, I guess in the fruit and vegetable department we are about even--lost some and gained some, and I'd much rather have the tomatoes than the pears because the pears aren't tempting for either their color or their flavor.