What does an apple taste like?

What does an apple taste like?

Small pleasures

Among the many signs that indicate the arrival of summers, is the growing presence of fruit chaat sellers. People in the city are seen flocking towards the vendors to have a plate of assorted fruits which include pineapple, papaya, melon and so on. The surprising part, according to the vendors, is the ‘disappearance’ of their customers during winters. 

Ram Chand, originally hailing from Uttar Pradesh, is among the few vendors who sell fruit chaat throughout the year. He said in the last couple of years; he too was forced to change his trade for the winter months. “I sold peanuts all of winter,” Chand said. 

He has his own theory about the decrease of fruit eaters. “There used to be a time when parents would run behind their children to have fruits, because they knew the value of fresh food. With the arrival of fast food and chips, consumption of fruit decreased among children. Only old people are health conscious. This change, (in fruit eating habit) which started more than a decade ago, is now being seen,” Chand adds.

But it is not the culture of fast food which gets to people like Chand, it is the rising costs of fruits. “It’s getting very expensive. I used to sell fruits but years ago switched to selling fruit chaat. A kilo of apples can cost anything between Rs 70 to Rs 100 and how many can afford to have it. According to me, even the poor deserve to eat fruit. So selling fruit chaat seemed a better option. Business is good in summers,” Chand told Metrolife.

There are of course those who would not like to engage in eating anything from the streets, but the fact that chaats are the only form in which the economically weak can access a variety of fruits at the same time cannot be denied, according to Manohar, an auto driver. 

“Of course the customers belong to different social and economic backgrounds but the majority of them won’t be able to have fruit like the ones who travel in long cars,” he said. 

“I hear there are apples from China. I wonder how they taste like,” he added. Manhohar however added, that hygiene and sanitation being the problem, he doesn’t risk taking chaat to his family. 

“I brought fruit last night for my entire family,” said Manohar. “Four hundred rupees,” he gestures by showing four fingers.

Dinesh Kumar, seemed to be the only person, the Metrolife team met, who didn’t want to get into the ‘politics of fruit’. “Yes, I wonder about the people who won’t be able to taste some food items all their life. It’s one’s destiny,” he said smilingly, adding “what can we do about it!” 

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