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Orchard

Tales of my youth, being shot at , trespassing and apple scrumping and avoiding drunken wasps

By Mike Singleton - MikeydredPublished 3 years ago 3 min read
4
Waspman

When I was growing up I lived on a semi farm and we had an orchard. It seems to me all orchards these days grow specific items but our orchard had all sorts of trees. There were apples , plums , pears and a few more, not to mention the berry bushes.

We would wander in farmer’s fields , build dams where we shouldn’t flooding parts of fields, wander over frozen ponds often cracking the ice and barely escaping still dry. ALthough we were young we were trespassing , often dodging cows , bulls and sometimes even bullets (yes that happened in the UK though probably to warn us off rather than actually harm us).

Wandering the fields was an adventure and we would find woods , trees , canals , ponds all to explore. This was before personal cameras or recording devices, the compact cassette record player had only just appeared, so this is all based on my memory which at times may be unreliable to say the least.

We would climb trees then sometimes realise that we couldn’t get down , although we always did. I have never broken a bone in my life (yet) but looking back I am surprised that me and my friends survived.

Riding bikes over the curved wall of a hump back bridge was a challenge we set each other , with a twenty foot drop into the Lancaster Canal if you didn’t make it.We were lucky to be able to do that and continually were scolded if parents ever found out what we had been up to.

During our travels we would see other orchards and if we were daring enough we would engage in apple scrumping , although any fruit was fair game for us. Again we never ever seemed to get caught, although these days it’s seldom I see opportunities like that , although I am in a far mor urban area.

Back home we had a tree which I think had conference pears when I always have thought look particularly unappetising, however a delivery of mixed fruit and veg from Newcastle’s Grainger Market included some conference pears and I thought I’ve bought them , I’ll try them , and they were gorgeous and converted me to my favourite pear of choice. Great consistency and don’t turn to mush immediately like some others , pity I didn’t realise that about the pear tree at home.

I am a fan of most fruits and berries although I was once told by a diabetic nurse that I should not touch fruit at all because it contains fructose, and I should only eat carrots and celery. Of course I did not take her advice. Everything you eat is turned into sugar for you body to get powered by.. In my form of diabetes the sugar lies about in my veins and arteries , rots them , leading to lots of obvious complications. But I do eat fruit and a combination of exercise, diet and medication keeps me on top of my game.

Again going back to the orchard one of my favourite fruits are, and were, plums. Gorgeously sweet but unfortunately a target for wasps, the football hooligans of the insect world. So wen we used to pick plums we would often find wasps inside the plums , so we had to carefully check before eating. Wasps would start eating into the plum and then get drunk on the plum juice (did you realise that alcohol is the purest form of sugar), so picking an eating plums was a bit of wasp roulette.

So another throwback to my youth to reveal a bit of what I did as a kid , and I think we can share the Keith Moon composed “Waspman” by The Who as our lead music for this piece

Teenage years
4

About the Creator

Mike Singleton - Mikeydred

Weaver of Tales, Poems, Music & Love

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Vocal Tips

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