Since it is grapefruit season, I find myself cutting a lot of grapefruit. And I can’t do so without hearing my Papa Waters’ whistle. I love grapefruit but part of that love is the nostalgia grapefruit brings.
My Papa would cut our grapefruit perfectly. He would slice between each triangle and around the outside. He whistled while he worked. He put it in the perfect form fitting bowl, sprinkled it with raw sugar, and gave us a special spoon to eat it with. Now, as I prepare grapefruit the exact same way, I think of that whistle. The process of cutting grapefruit is a labor of love. I won’t cut grapefruit for very many people. It requires two knives, a special spoon, and lots of effort.
Because it is grapefruit season, I cut grapefruit for those I love, and I think of my Papa and that whistle.
Artwork by Elizabeth Mayville.