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When life is stale, be adventurous. Be spontaneous. That has somehow been embedded in my head. When I feel myself doing the same thing day after day, I have to try something new or do something out of the ordinary.
Last weekend I was starting to feel stale. I was fighting the flu all week (doing poorly) and I hadn’t gotten much of anything accomplished. My days consisted of going to work and rushing back home for Tylenol and a lazy night.
Needless to say, Sunday, I needed something fresh.
I rode to Ohio with a few college friends that I hadn’t seen in a while. Our plan was to go to Flubs and Jungle Jim’s.
Flubs is a tiny, local ice cream shop, my friend swore is better than Whippy Dipp which everyone knows is a lie. Still, it was nice. It was a hot day and ice cream was like a piece of heaven.
After Flubs we drove to Jungle Jim’s. If you haven’t been, I suggest making a stop there. It is a grocery store that provides food from all over the world. I’m told people in the area go as a normal grocery store but I’ve always just gone to look around. It’s fun to walk around and see different foods, shows and random decorations all over the store.
Well now that I am in the store, my hunger for spontaneity should have been satisfied, but it wasn’t.
There was still a deep conviction in me that I had to buy something there and try it.
Walking around the aisles I saw all kinds of different foods. Jungle Jim’s has one section where they divide each aisle into different countries.
I moseyed down India, England, Ireland, Hawaii and China. I picked up foods that I couldn’t pronounce, let alone let in my body.
It wasn’t until we came across the fresh fruits where I found what I was looking for. There it was, cactus leaves. I had never heard of eating cactus before. I thought, this is perfect. I figured it would taste close to a pear.
I got to the register and the young lady had to ask two different people how to price the fruit. Now I know that should have been a clue for me not to buy it.
Other friends that I went with bought foreign energy drinks. If I knew what cactus tasted like I would have followed suit but instead I waited for the cashier to figure out how to charge me and I left, overjoyed for the moment.
Bringing home my cactus, I wasn’t sure what to expect. My parents lived in Arizona for a while before I was born so I thought maybe it was a common food there and I would be bringing home their favorite fruit.
Well, that wasn’t the case. After a few laughs, they decided to let me have my fun and cook it. I trimmed off the sides, scraped the needles off and put it on the grill. The menu that night was grilled hot dogs, hamburgers and cactus.
I should have known by the thick, gooey mess that was still oozing out and the snicker on my dad’s face that it wasn’t going to be good but there was no turning back now.
The rest of the story is a series of dramatic faces and long gulps of water trying to wash my mouth out. To say the least, I found out I am not a fan of cactus. It was tasted rotten and bitter. Actually, I think it’s the first fruit that I haven’t liked.
Next time I feel stale in life, I think I’ll go to the movies.
(Jenny Johnson is the Kentucky Press Assosciation intern for the Grant County News. She can be reached at 824-3343.)