LAJAS, Puerto Rico — There’s an previous superstition in Puerto Rico that when the avocado bushes are particularly filled with fruit, there is a hurricane coming.
This summer time, the avocado bushes had been bursting with fruit, so hypothesis had been flying for weeks. A storm was on the way in which.
Hurricane Fiona – which slammed the island final weekend — precipitated catastrophic flooding and landslides in lots of communities, and not less than two deaths. Its 85-mph winds blew roofs off their homes. And it claimed one other casualty. On a lot of the island, Fiona blew all of the avocados off of their bushes.
Now, within the days for the reason that storm, folks have been scrambling to eat all of them – and simply as importantly – to provide them away, earlier than they rot.
“We have to take good care of them,” stated Jonathan Velez Rosado.
In the capital, San Juan, he was serving to run a donation drive gathering water, meals and toiletries for affected communities. His volunteers had been providing individuals who introduced donations a token gratitude: two avocados apiece, pulled out of a sack full of them.
Across Puerto Rico, avocados have turn into a foreign money of group this week. People have been opening their entrance doorways to seek out baggage filled with them, left there by neighbors. Buckets full of the fruit have been left alongside the edges of the winding mountain roads left partially impassible by landslides.
Puerto Ricans have been consuming avocado for breakfast, lunch and dinner. With rice and beans, gazpacho, and on toast.
“At work today my colleagues gave me three bags!” stated Pedro Lugo, who lives within the city of Lajas, on the island’s southwest coast. “I said, ‘What am I going to do with all of these? I can’t eat guacamole everyday!’ “
He began giving them away, together with to an NPR reporter.
When Fiona’s winds picked up, Lugo started to fret about his neighbor’s avocado tree. He went into the lavatory and watched for hours by a small window.
“It started dancing from side to side,” he stated.
By the time the winds had handed, solely a single avocado had survived.
“In a couple of weeks, that avocado is going to cost more than $100, because it’s the only one left,” he stated, laughing.
His neighbor, Willy Torres Martinez, felt his coronary heart sink when he appeared out and noticed greater than 100 avocados littering his again yard. But he quickly began packing them into plastic baggage and delivering them to his neighbors.
“I like to share,” he stated. “Because when you share, it comes back to you twofold.”
The avocados have turn into the hyperlink for connecting together with his neighbors within the days for the reason that storm. After a tragedy, he stated, that is a very powerful factor.
Ezequiel Rodriguez Andino contributed reporting.