Pineapple Village

A Pineapple Story

Pineapple Village

Once upon a time, in a remote village in what is now known as South America, there lived a young girl named Maria.

Maria lived with her Father Ramon, Mother Julia, and a younger brother Felipe. Felipe enjoyed helping his Father work the farm. Maria helped her mother with the household chores. During their free time, Maria and Felipe liked to play and explore near the forest.

Maria’s parents always taught her and her brother to be kind to all living things. Plants, animals, and people. Especially to those who are less fortunate. Her father always said, “You cannot know who a person truly is simply because they look different from you”.

Edge of the Forest

One day after her daily chores, Maria with her brother to another part of the woods. As they explored, Maria heard a whimper.

Curious, she moved closer. The sound got louder. “It “The sound seems to be coming from around those vines”, Maria thought to herself. “Keep close to me Felipe.”, Maria said to her brother. As they got closer, Maria saw a strange bird caught on the vines. The bird was not big, about the size of their chickens. But it had green and yellow feathers. It also had what appears to be a crown.

The bird had gotten caught in thorny vines and could not free itself. It flapped its wings, and it jumped but it only made things worse. The bird heard Maria approach and spoke to her.

“Please help me”, the bird said. This surprised Maria because she had never heard a bird speaker before.
“Go home and tell Pappy”, Maria urged Felipe. She was worried the bird might be dangerous.

Maria was even more frightened when she looked closely and realized that the bird had four eyes! But then she remembered her father teaching, for her to be kind. The bird was different. But maybe not bad.

“Don’t be frightened. I will find something to help free you,” Maria said.

Maria looked around and found a sturdy branch. With that, she could pull enough thorns away and the bird freed itself.

“You are free!”, Maria said all excited.”Now stay away from those vines so you do not get caught again”, she said. Maria still frightened, held a branch between her and the bird.

“Do not be afraid” the bird said. “Thank you for your kindness. I would not have known what would have happened to me if you had not come to help me.”

Then the bird introduced itself. “I am the Diwata (Spirit or Fairy) of this forest. I look after the trees, plants, and animals that live within this forest. These vines are not native to this forest. The enemy of the forest placed the bush here to cause pain and misery. And I was powerless against it.”

“For your bravery and kindness, I will grant you a gift. This gift will keep you and your family healthy, and an income. It will serve as a reminder of what you have done here today.” Then the Diwata turned back and returned to the forest.

Maria went her way. She told her family about this strange encounter near the edge of the woods. They were just happy that she was safe.

The next day, Maria found a strange plant growing in the yard. It had green and yellow colors that reminded her of Diwata. Maria and her family tasted that fruit and knew that it was very good. And they called this “Ananas” which means “delicious fruit”.

They grew more and shared this with their friends and neighbors. In time the fruit spread around the world. Some people still call it “Ananas”, others Pina. Others would call it pineapple.

The Story Behind This Tale

I first heard the story about the origins of the pineapple as a young boy, growing up in the Philippines. In a nutshell, there is a girl named Pina. Her mother would ask her for help around the house. And she did not, some many times. The final straw is when her mother is ill, and Pina again makes an excuse not to help. So the mother tells Pina she wishes she had a hundred eyes that she could use to look for things. And thus the pineapple appears. I recently started thinking about the story and I thought, “Why would a mother, suspecting that this strange plant is her cursed daughter, decide to taste it rather than reverse the curse?” A scary thought, right?

So I came up with a different tale about how the Pineapple came about.

Hope you enjoyed it!

© 2024, Norman Talon. All rights reserved.

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