September 6, 2018

Corn-u-hope-ia, Corn-u-copia, Corn-u-nope-ia

This year's corn harvest has begun.

The first time Linda and I grew corn was when we lived in a housing cooperative in the middle of Edmonton, Alberta, the northernmost city in North America with a metro population of at least one million. It got cold there in the winter, but summers were warm enough to grow a nice crop.

We planted our mini-field of corn on the perimeter of our community garden. We were filled with corn-u-hope-ia. 

There was no fence, and people walking by could witness our plant's progress as we nurtured our first field to fruition. I wouldn't have minded if people wandered over from the sidewalk and picked cobs to take home for supper.

After a pleasant summer, our corn was ready to harvest. The following day was to be our celebration of filling our horn of plenty. We were looking forward to a cornfest with our neighbours, and sharing our sweet cobs far and wide. 

As it turned out, we did share our corn. All of it. Every single cob. Its just that we have no idea of who we shared it with, because the harvest was a clandestine event which occurred in the dark of night that evening.

When we went to harvest the next day, we found a garden of empty stalks. We never tasted as much as a kernel. We went from corn-u-copia to corn-u-nope-ia, and it took us by surprise.

"No way! This can't be happening." 

"We are so angry." 

"Maybe we can look for it, or offer a reward for the safe return of our unshucked cobs." 

"How sad." 

We progressed through the first 4 stages of grief (denial, anger, bargaining, and depression) quickly as we stood there viewing the corny crime scene. Before long we entered into the last stage, and accepted our new cornless reality. 

A bit after that we were laughing about the whole affair. It was so outrageous - every single cob was gone. They did an excellent job of harvesting.

We hoped that whoever helped themselves to our patch enjoyed the corn, as well as the love we put into each and every kernel over the course of the growing season.

As it happened, we did not grow corn again until now. This year we have a small section of stalks bearing a nice selection of cobs. 

The kernels have passed the watery stage, and are showing a milky juice. Time for harvest. 

Finally, about twenty years after our initial efforts, we can actually eat fresh corn that we have grown in our own garden. It's back to a corn-u-copia. 

The stripped stalks we will leave until the pole beans are done, later in the fall. 

Let the cornfest begin.

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