Monday, September 27, 2010

An Unfortunate Ending

Mom bought me a Topsy Turvy for my birthday this spring. I admit, I kind of wanted one because we don't have a garden, nor the room for one. And since Topsy Turvy boasted wonders for the apartment-dweller, I dropped a few hints and viola! Instant tomatoes! Alright, maybe not quite that instant. My mother also gave me a packet of tomato seeds, which I planted in those little peat pods that expand when you water 'em. I planted twelve.

I was committed to these plants. I watered them. I checked every day to see if they sprouted. I demanded tomatoes. Sure, they sprouted, and grew, and turned into handsome little seedlings. Still, I demanded tomatoes. When the time was right, I gave all but two away to friends and co-workers and planted mine in my sparkly new Topsy Turvy!

I watered it diligently and fussed over it like a momma. When I brushed against the leaves, the perfumed oil wafted around me and left fragrant trailings on my skin. I was in love with having a tomato plant and was dreaming of the tomatoes I could put in salads, in pasta dishes and on burgers... sigh.

In late July it started sprouting cute little yellow blossoms, and I just knew that tomatoes were right around the corner! Then, the flowers died. No tomatoes. Maybe my plant's just a late bloomer, I thought. Plant puberty. I begged with my tomato plant. Nay, pleaded with it! Please give me tomatoes! I asked my friends & co-workers; most of theirs were doing well, no issues. Mom's tomatoes were doing just okay, up to the point they were eaten by ninja deer, attacking in the dead of night. Even the neighbor down the street had lovely-looking tomato plants with gorgeous greenery cascading from their inverted homes!

Finally! In mid-August, my poor, scrawny pre-pubescent plant sprouted four tiny, green tomatoes! Jumpy-claps!! I was so excited, I had to drag Blake out to see them. All my hard work and mothering was finally paying off! Daily I would check the rest of the plant but unfortunately, only those four were the only tomatoes that I had so far. But what beauties! Those little orbs continued to grow and ripen until two of them looked good enough to eat:

Okay... almost good enough to eat. I gave them a few more days and then I unceremoniously plucked them from their vine. Beautiful and crimson. Have I eaten them yet? No. It just feels wrong! All that work for two mere tomatoes. I want them to last but we all know they won't!

So this is where I stand. Two little red tomatoes sitting on my kitchen counter, just waiting to be gobbled up. Currently, one of the remaining fruits is starting to ripen. I have no hope for the rest of the plant, although it continues to produce little yellow flowers. When we leave in a week for New Mexico, I must let it go. Maybe the simple fact is that not all tomatoes like to hang by their roots. Maybe all the blood rushed to their heads.

An Unfortunate Ending, indeed.

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