Saturday, February 6, 2010

A Mystery of Cherries

Two days ago I set out on a journey, perhaps even an expedition. I forgot to bring my camera cable so I can't start posting my travelogue. Unless...Unless I tell about something that happened before I started taking pictures, something that may not be related to anything else I've been doing.

I was not an hour from home, driving through a little rain, twisting and turning on a road that winds along the slopes of a volcanic mountain. Coming around a curve, I spied at a turnout a gallon jar that I am fairly certain was full of maraschino cherries. It was just sitting there neatly upright in the middle of the wide flat area of dirt. Of course my resourceful self said, "Stop! Someone has left a treasure for you."

That thought was just a flash. There was no way to safely stop, and anyway, I certainly don't need those confections, even if I could know they weren't poisoned or something. But for miles and hours I kept returning to those red cherries in my mind, and wondering how their random appearance might eventually tie in to this whole trip. I normally like to see how everything does connect.

It might not be random; I looked that word up, because I rarely use it. Random means "occurring without definite aim, reason, or pattern." I don't know the story behind the event. Did someone have a reason for stopping and dropping off the jar? If it had simply fallen out of a vehicle it couldn't have landed upright. I can be reasonably confident that there is no pattern to be discovered. Unfortunately my mind doesn't naturally imagine stories to explain odd occurrences, so I can't make use of this sighting in that creative way. At this point it doesn't look like I will be able to fit an out-of-place jug of cherries into the flow of my journey. But there it was.


margaret said...

If it was a sufficiently out of the way place perhaps someone left them there specifically for someone else. My friend used to leave eggs in a box at the top of her lane for the bus driver - he couldn't detour his bus but he did want farm fresh eggs! Still there is something much more seductive and mysterious about cherries. I empathise about leaving the camera - if it had been me I would have been camera-less too.

Anastasia Theodoridis said...

Why don't you hold a contest to see who can make up the best story about it?

And/or, why don't you try yourself? C'mon, you can do it! There has simply GOT to be a story in there, somewhere!!!!

Anastasia Theodoridis said...

The cherries were left there by a lover, as gift (of some special significance) to his love.

They were left there by people who were using them in their cocktails until they were chased away by police.

They were left as an offering to the goddess of the volcano. (People do such things in Hawaii, although Madame Pele, their volcano goddess, prefers gin.)

A whole GALLON of maraschino cherries?? That in itself has got to have a story behind it, because who in the world buys or uses them in that quantity?

Anastasia Theodoridis said...

They were left there as a clue in a Treasure Hunt game.

Anastasia Theodoridis said...

Nobody ever finds out what the cherries were doing there, but something wonderful happens as a result.

Oh, any of these would make the kernel of a good story. Do please have a story contest!

Pom Pom said...

I wonder if they were packed in the car,under someone's legs and the passenger became so uncomfortable that the driver pulled over and left them at the side of the road. I know I have traveled in over packed cars and grumbled about lack of space. A big jar of cherries is a pretty sight and I hope the reason is much more romantic than my guess!

margaret said...

“What do you mean, you’re naming the baby after her OTHER grandmother??? Well, okay, if you insist, you’ll find Auntie Jen’s cherries on the corner of Pine Creek Road 93 miles south-west of Coronado.” *SLAM*


Girl looking through binoculars, “I thought you said if we left something other folks would come along and leave stuff, but there’s nothing else there yet.”


One alien to another.
“You said they find these things irresistable but everyone keeps driving past apart from that one brown-haired woman who fumbled in her purse for a bit.”


Husband to wife.
“Are we far enough from your grandmother’s house to ditch these things yet?”


50 miles straight east Fred says to Jean, “Look, honey, there’s a giant jar of preserved kumquats.”

Left-Handed Housewife said...

I like the idea that someone left them there for others to ponder. I agree with the commenter above who felt a whole gallon of cherries is a mighty load of maraschinos. A preponderance of cherries!

See how much fun the person who left them there has given us? A gift!


gretchen from lifenut said...

I am the only person on earth who is allergic to cherries.

To me, they'd be a sign of doom.

I like reading happy stories about them, though, because I loved them before they tried killing me on my 18th birthday.

オテモヤン said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Cathy said...

I read this post the other day and the word random would not leave my mind. I was pondering its relation to my life, having nothing to do with the jar of cherries sitting by the side of the road, however.
My conclusive thought, in a nutshell, was that we should not live our life randomly, but purposefully. The LORD intends for us to live our life with purpose.

So while there may be times of great randomness in my life, living with a mindset of purpose is my utmost desire and prayer.

thegeekywife said...

I think your label "odds and ends" sums it up nicely. A very odd thing to see in a road! But the end, ah, depends on how you write about it. A very whimsical story could be written about it. The other commentators gave much to laugh about!

GretchenJoanna said...

Thank you all VERY much for your comments. I did briefly consider Anastasia T's idea of a contest, but I realized it was not my kind of thing, just as she and Margaret fulfilled that idea pretty well on their own.
Yes, it was a nice gift someone gave me, especially when shared with appreciative and imaginative friends such as I have here.