Durians for sale along Colombo – Negambo road – Photo – Nandasiri Wanninayaka
This is the durian season. I tasted my first fruit yesterday after seeing a friend of mine’s photo of an opened durian in Facebook.
I bought a fruit for 330 LKR. In fact I had to haggle it down to that amount from an original 350 LKR. I took it home and first showed it to my son who had not seen one before. Then I opened it and showed him again and he didn’t want to join me to taste it. Maybe due to its odor. For me, though, it is a fragrance.
Nobody at home wanted to share the fruit and I had to eat it up alone! The delicious it was, but it was too much for me. The durian was full of flesh. I ate it all and it was so strong in nutrition that I fell asleep immediately after eating it for full two hours. I shouldn’t eat a full fruit hereafter.
Durians are hated by many due to its peculiar odor. But a few like the smell. This is full of nutrition and is considered the “king of fruits” by Southeast Asians.
I first ate durians a long time ago when my eldest brother who worked in Kothmale brought home some fruits. Nobody except my eldest brother and I ate the fruits. When offered to some of the village youth, one guy told, “You should have the experience of eating shit before eating durians.”
Muslims in Sri Lanka buy this a lot according to the sellers. This is said to be an aphrodisiac as well. Durian lovers don’t mind the high prices as they know its effect. Unfortunately, durians, mangosteen and rambutans come in more or less the same season and your eyes go only to rambutan due to its attractive color. I don’t know much about mangosteen, but you should try a durian once in a while.
ඡායාරූපය – නන්දසිරි වන්නිනායක
රඹුටන් වාරය නැවතත් පැමිණ තිබේ. මෙයනම් මගේ පොකට් එකට බෙහෙවින්ම බලපාන කාරණයකි. ඒමන්ද, මගේ පුතා, අභිලාෂ් රඹුටන් කෑමට ඉතා අශා නිසාය. ඔහුට දිනපතා රඹුටන් සැපයීම අදින් ආරම්භ කළෙමි. රඹුටන් වාරය අවසන්වී ඇට ගැහිච්ච, ලොං හැලිච්ච ගෙඩි ඉතිරි වනතුරු මම දැන් නොකඩවා අභීට රඹුටන් සැපයිය යුතුය. මම එය ඉතා සතුටින් ඉටු කරමි.
අද රඹුටන් ගෙඩියක මිළ රුපියල් දහයකි. ගියවරද පටන් ගත්තේ ඔහොමය. ඒත් සති දෙක තුන යන විට ගෙඩියක් ශත පනහ දක්වා මිල බැස්සෙය. මෙවරත් එසේ වේවායි පතමි. එහෙත් පහුගිය වැසි දිනවලදී බොහොමයක් පැහුන රඹුටන් ගෙඩි බිම වැටී විනාශ වූ බවද කොහේ හරි කියවූවෙමි. ඒ නිසා මෙවර රඹුටන් මිළ අප කැමති තරම් පහලට නොයනු ඇත.
රඹුටන් වත්තකට ගොස් රඹුටන් කතාවක් ලියාගෙන ඒමට මම ඉතා කැමති උනත් තවම එහෙම අවශ්ථාවක් ආවේ නැත්තේ ඇයිදැයි මටම නොතේරේ. මම දැන් ඉන්නේ ගම්පහ දිස්ත්රික්කයේ නිසා එය ඉතා පහසු කටයුත්තක් උනත් තවම රඹුටන් වත්තක් සමග තානාපති සබඳතා ගොඩ නගා ගැනීමට මම සමත් වූයේ නැත්තෙමි. කවුරුහරි එහෙම සබඳතාවයක් තියෙන අයෙක් සිටීනම් කරුනාකර මාව අමතන්නැයි මම ඉතා ආදරයෙන් ඉල්ලා සිටිමි.
It started with 20 fruits for 100 LKR. Again it was reduced to 25 fruits for 100 LKR. Now it is 30 fruits for 100 fruits. That was how the price of rambutan went down during last few weeks. Last year, a fruit cost around 8-10 LKR. But this year, due to abundant harvest, the prices are going down. It is likely to go down further it seems.
Still the prices of fresher rambutan sold close to Don Pedris ground are more expensive and they target the elite clients. For the common man, the regular fruits are available for lower prices. But for the cities like Anuradhapura, 3-4 days old fruits are sold for higher prices. They rarely get the better variety. They have to be satisfied with a lower variety which is smaller than the regular rambutans.
I met this guy Sujith Priyashantha (23) at Pelawatta, Battaramulla today. He is married and no children yet. He lives at his parents’ house in Horana. He buys his rambutans from Ingiriya, not from Malwana as all the other sellers say. He does his business with the help of a three wheeler owner during the season. They buy a fruit for 2.50 LKR from the gardens and sell at 4 LKR with a profit margin of 1.50 LKR from a fruit. Sujith makes around 700-800 a day during the rambutan season. During the off-season he drives a three wheeler and does some odd jobs.