Before I went to Huangyan, I actually had no idea about Huangyan. But when my family heard that I was going to Huangyan, they blurted out that they were going to eat honey oranges, right?
When it comes to oranges, they must be a simple fruit that countless people are used to seeing since childhood, just like apples, bananas and pears. This is also true for me. When I was a kid, there were many fruit trees in the backyard of my house. At its peak, there were two loquat trees, two pomegranate trees, one guava tree, and one peach tree. There were no orange trees - strangely enough, I don't think I ever saw one as a child. But oranges were often eaten.
In those days, when it was market day - there were two markets close to home, and one day out of five was a "market day" - my parents came back from the market, and besides buying the necessary fresh pork In addition to buying the necessary fresh pork, pots and pans, and other necessities, we would also buy some snacks. My brother and I heard the sound of my father's bicycle chain in front of the house - all bicycle chains sounded the same, but we could tell at once - there were baskets or pockets hanging on the back of the bicycle, carrying a large pile of goods. We ran up there and looked for something that belonged to us. An orange rolled out, and when we turned it over again, we found not just one, but a handy bag. We took the whole handy bag of oranges out, untied it, and put it in the sun. The sun shone brightly, and each orange, with its own bright luster, silent and vivid, full of the sweetness of the human world.
After eating the oranges, the orange peel can not be thrown away for a while. It is always necessary to keep it, what can be used to keep it? For us, there is really not much use, just a momentary plaything - we like to fold the orange peel, skin side out, squeeze a little. The squirt of juice has a special pungent smell mixed with fresh fragrance. If it's a winter night, eating oranges by the fire, sometimes you can't help but to bake the orange petals, baking a strange smell; moreover, you can't help but to align the orange peel to the fire, squeeze, the fire light suddenly jumped, wait a moment, there is a warm hot baked fruit smell diffused.
The orange peel really comes in handy at the grandmother's place. Grandma gathered the orange peels, spread them out in a bamboo dustpan, and left them in the sun. Within a few days, the orange peel lost almost all of its moisture, curled up and hardened, and became dull in color. I always remember my grandmother squatting in the courtyard, two orange peel-like pale hands turning these orange peels, clatter clatter clatter, as if reviewing her treasures - these orange peels, grandmother is to be used to make medicinal wine. As for whether or not the real brew into a medicinal wine, now I can not remember, not to mention that the taste of the medicinal wine, I naturally never tasted - I can not help but imagine that will be in the wine bitter and spicy, adding a touch of sweet, right?
Until the last years of her life, my grandmother still cherished orange peels. When I came home, I took oranges to her many times, peeled them and handed them to her, she subconsciously tore off some of the white silk on the orange petals, and then stuffed them into her mouth, which only had two or three teeth left, her dried-up mouth moving like an old cow regurgitating, squeezing the juice out of the petals by her teeth bed. At this time, she still did not forget to urge me to give her the orange peel. When I handed her the peel, she clutched it in her hand, and when she couldn't clutch it with one hand, she used both hands, as if she was clutching the treasure of her life.
--She cherished more than orange peels. She also cherished other grains and crops as well. For example, every time I handed her a cut watermelon, she always had to chew all the red flesh before she would let go. She would not listen to me even though I told her that there were many oranges in the house. Grandma would not know that these things are not as precious as they were when I was a child, and often times, eating an orange is no longer a rare treat, nor is it as tasty as it was when I was a child.
Grandma would not know that there were more than ten orange trees planted on the roof of the third floor of our new house. Planted in the frame of the wooden board, short, every year can bear a lot of fruit. These oranges, unlike the fruit on the trees in the backyard when we were kids, were on our minds all day long. These oranges are forgotten, and can be kept until they turn from green to orange, from sour to sweet, until the New Year, when my brother and I go back to pick.
Just this past year, my brother and I did not go home. The oranges on the top of the third floor of the new house must have stayed even longer. The things that she cherished are still here in this world and are destined to stay for a long, long time. Only, they seem to be a little different.
I think of a small poem written at the end of 2019, titled "Oranges and Peaches" ("orange" is a common word for "tangerine", and this poem can only be established with this common word). And it is transcribed here.
"What fruit should I eat in early winter? To eat anything / is to take a part of nature / for oneself. Trees grow from the earth / light and rain, wind and snow / come and go. And the soft flowers spill out from the hard / branches. How do these silent words / shake our hearts? / fragile and fragrant, colorful and simple / the fruit is born here, permanent born in the fugitive / this part of nature, through what kind of landscape / to come to the light, to come to us / still life, born from the long gaze of man / as a still life of the fruit, born from the long gestation of nature / eat an orange, eat a peach / in this early winter, whether "auspicious" or not Whether it is "auspicious" or not / we thus grow into a part of nature / conceived in the body of darkness / born out of the thought of light".
The early winter has passed, and now it is spring. I wonder if the orange trees have blossomed in the Huangyan honey orange forest? I believe that the Huangyan oranges, which keep blossoming and bearing fruits year after year, will surely meet the children who keep growing and being born year after year, and bring the ancient and fresh taste into their taste buds and engrave it into their years, and become their unique and lasting memory of food in the future.