And then I fell into the couch and ate watermelon salad until none remained.

Sometimes I have no idea where the time goes. My nightstand is still littered with evidence of Paris and the suitcase which still features the Air Canada tags from my trip in May is still on the floor. Not long after I got back and sort of unpacked we stuffed the suitcase with summer clothes and light formal wear and drove six hours to Osoyoos, a small town in the Okanagan – wine- and rattlesnake-country, for those unfamiliar with the region.

Where Vancouver was rainy and bleak, Osoyoos was hot and sunny, and the dry desert air was a rare treat for my hair, which cannot be worn down most of the time as disco is dead and there is no place for big blonde disco hair in my day-to-day life. I ate ice cream and we got suntans on the beach and beside the pool at the resort where we were staying for Nick’s youngest sister’s wedding. For some reason, theirs was the only grey day while we were up there.

We’ve been back two weeks and the suitcase hasn’t moved from its spot on the bedroom floor, and I’m pretending that it’s still there because the cat loves it. She has claimed it as her own personal chaise, and she stretches her furry little body diagonally across it, chewing the zipper pull on one corner and batting at the pull on the other end with her back paws.

In the time between trips and in the time since we’ve been back, there were the playoffs, and hockey games every two days for weeks and weeks. Nick aged thirty years during the Vancouver-Boston series, and his liver grew three sizes. He raged quietly as Vancouver gave up so many goals, and raged outwardly as we watched our city implode in the aftermath of Game 7. Our reaction to the end of it all has been relief.

There were other things. Nick’s sister and brother-in-law and their little girl were in town, so we attended events in their honour and then fed them a feast, and the youngest sister celebrated her wedding a second time at home, with a larger guest list, and I made the food, anticipating 80 guests. The result is that I am tempted to call our whole apartment a loss and walk away; there is icing on the living room rug and bits of dried blini batter stuck to the cat and weird smells coming from behind the freezer where I dropped and then couldn’t find several dozen blueberries and at least four pieces of pineapple.

In all of this, I have been moving slower and slower as it becomes more and more apparent that this is not a beer belly slung over the top of my jeans. I have been measuring the transition of my belly button from innie to outie, and it looks like it should complete its journey within the week.

My pants don’t fit and I want to violently devour every watermelon I see. I almost cried because a store was out of cantaloupe, and threw a fit in a different store because they had no canned orange segments. Nick said something about hormones, so I punched him. Extremely personal and very unsolicited questions, observations, and advice are now arriving in earnest. And while they have never lacked the appreciation they deserve, my boobs and what I do or do not intend to do with them are suddenly everyone’s business. The correct answer to such probing questions does not seem to be “I’m planning on only feeding the little raptor Diet Coke so it doesn’t get fat.”

It should not have come as a surprise how many people do not have a sense of humour about babies.

It will be a boy baby, by the way. Who, at the moment, compels me toward melon and leaves me ravenous for cans of fruit cocktail, who seems to want an endless supply of Hawkins Cheezies, pulled pork sandwiches, avocados, icy Cherry Coke, and cold pieces of summer fruit.

To keep things interesting, I’ve devised the following salad, which makes it possible to incorporate melon into dinnertime. It’s Meatless Monday friendly, and you can eat it on a bed of greens if you feel like it. I prefer watermelon for this.

Savoury fruit salad

(Serves four as a side dish)

Dressing:

  • 2 tbsp. light soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp. rice vinegar
  • 2 tsp. sesame oil
  • 2 tsp. sriracha
  • 2 tsp. honey
  • Juice of 1/2 lime

Salad:

  • 2 cups diced watermelon
  • 1 long English cucumber, diced
  • 1 avocado, diced
  • 1 mango, diced
  • 2 scallions, finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp. chopped fresh cilantro
  • Toasted sesame seeds, for garnish

In a small bowl, whisk together soy sauce, rice vinegar, sesame oil, sriracha, honey, and lime juice. Taste, adjust seasonings as needed, and set aside.

In a large bowl, combine watermelon, cucumber, avocado, mango, scallions, and cilantro. Toss with dressing, and sprinkle with sesame seeds. Serve cold.

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13 thoughts on “And then I fell into the couch and ate watermelon salad until none remained.

  1. Do you want me to bake you a fruit cocktail cake? And I think the Diet Coke thing is pretty funny….but I’m not a breeder.

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    1. What is this fruit cocktail cake you speak of? I am pretty sure I want it.

      Most people do not find my hilarious jokes hilarious. It’s a real shame. I am not going to have any friends on the playground. Again.

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  2. You have plenty of friends on the playground. I’d watch out though, because we may just want your watermelon, and I’m pretty sure we could grab it and run faster than you right now, what with the baby bump 😉

    Looks like you’re super busy and hungry lately! MIss you and take care and keep me posted.

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  3. I hated the way my personal life became the world’s business. I ate cases of oranges when I was pregnant. It’s watermelon season here, I can get them for $1 at the Farmer’s Market. We tend to take them for granted. This salad looks intriguing.

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  4. Oh yay, a boy raptor baby! Boy babies are awesome. Mine also craved melons – and converted pregnant me from a cantaloupe hater to a cantaloupe lover, just like that. He did not care for plums in utero (I couldn’t stand my heretofore favorite fruit) and does not care for them today, either. This salad looks divine. Yum.

    But can I just say — oh my God, that wedding gown! GLORIOUS!

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  5. Auntie Lynn: Cake = want.

    Crisi-tunity: Thanks!

    Eileen: YOU CAN’T HAVE MY WATERMELON. Also, I miss you too!

    Rootie: Oh yes oranges! I would be more into them if I could ever find the kind I like. But $1 watermelon?! You are very, very lucky.

    Linda: No plums? But you like them still, yes? Cantaloupe is one of those things I can’t live without. The fridge is always stocked. And it was a pretty dress, agreed.

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  6. Wow – cooking for 80? Crazy.. I am sure the food was wonderful.

    Oh, and I don’t care what you do with your breasts, as long as I can continue to look at them in the same admiration that I have always had.

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  7. Congratulations!!! I’m so excited for you and I hope that even though this is a food blog, you can show us your little guy when the time comes!!

    I also want watermelon all the time, but it’s because I’m black and we just cannot get enough of it. I thought the diet soda quip was funny.

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