(Fly Amanita is a poisonous mushroom)
I have special feelings for mushrooms. When I was little, I used to pick them in the woods.
My parents were professors in Wuhan University (China). We lived on campus on the outskirts of Wuhan which is a large city. There are hills, woods, fields and a lake nearby. For this reason, I never felt like a city girl.
In the summer, especially after rain, I used to walk to the woods in the back of our home to pick mushrooms. I loved seeing the mushrooms just budding out of the ground. They looked so beautiful and cute. To this date, I still dream about mushrooms from time to time. Once in my dream, the mushroom was so large that I told myself that one could only see it in a dream. J
In my childhood, mushroom picking was not only fun, but also practically helpful – we did eat the mushrooms I picked. Don’t worry. I did learn as which mushrooms were eatable from the people who used to do this year after year.
At the time, China was really poor. There were very limited supplies of food, even the essentials as vegetable. I know it is very hard for anyone here in this country (or China as of now) to imagine how scarcely food were to us. We were never felt starved as some of the less fortunate families, but we did have very limited amount and verity of food. So adding mushrooms to our meal was certainly much more than just a fun thing to do.
Now, I have a small secret to confess. Even though I was the one who picked the mushrooms, I didn’t eat much of them at all. “I don’t like them that much” was the reason I told my parents. I have never told them, or anyone, to this day, that I did like them. I just wanted others in my family (parents, younger sister and elderly grandma) to have them. You see, it gave me more pleasure to help out and it was more fulfilling to feel their enjoyment. Even as a little kid, I loved my family, not only in my heart, but also in my actions.
I have never told my parents why I said I didn’t like mushrooms and I will never be able to tell them now. I hope, that even though I didn’t say much, they knew how much I loved them, how much I wanted to help out the family and much how I wished for their happiness!
(Artist’s Fungus is an unusual mushroom)
(Chicken Mushroom tastes, supposedly, as chicken)
PS. my photo website: http://fineartamerica.com/profiles/qing-yang.html