Mission Accomplished: Prickly Pear

Let´s take it back a few months.

In September, I decided that I really wanted to try a prickly pear.  I was biking through the Davis arboretum on a sweaty flip flops tank top sort of day, and I saw the massive prickly pear cactus at the north side of the arboretum, almost to the Putah Creek Lodge.  For some reason, my pocket knife was in my backpack, so I was set.  I stashed my bike next to a big poofy bush and walked up to scope the scene.  As I neared the massive groupings of prickly pear hanging off the tear shaped cactus leaves (the entire cactus was the size of two billiards tables stacked atop eachother), I realized my prickly pear tasting afternoon probably wasn´t going to work out.  Each prickly pear was absolutely covered with cacti spikes, lots and lots and lots of spikes.

Ok, so there´s no way I can cut one off and catch it.  Hmmm, what are my other options?  Ah ha!

I really just wanted to taste one, I didn´t even need to eat one.  So I found a not-so-spikey one and stuck the blade of my pocket knife into the center and pulled the blade out so that just the juice was on the blade.  I licked the sweet fruity blade and immediately regretted my decision.  All of a sudden my mouth became this tingly, numb, box of unknown sensation…and then I moved my tongue.  YOWZAAAA! Apparently, sticking the knife into the prickly pear was not a problem, however, because the blade was juicy, when I pulled it out, the invisible prickly spikes had jumped on the party train and into my mouth.  I spent the next 45 minutes sitting on the bench in the arbo, trying desperately to wipe out the spikes/thorns/ouch from my mouth (only when a jogger or a walker wasn´t passing by, of course.)  It took three days or maybe a week to have my mouth feeling back normal and not stinging.

Prickly pear cactus = prickly & cactus.  As my friends told me repeatedly,

WOW Julie……..Idiot move!

I learned my lesson back in September, but now it´s February and I still want to try prickly pear.

First attempt: Prickly pear WIN, Julie FAIL.  Second attempt: GREAT SUCCESS!

I know that everyone in Davis laughed hysterically at my first go at prickly pear.  But, awwwww yeaaaaaaaa!  Wahoooo!

The rest of the day was pretty cool too, even though chowing on the prickly pear was my highlight.  This hostel has a pretty cool paint job, comfy bean bags, and two smaller than drop-kick size pugs named Mauricito and Carlitos.

Wyatt and his pal, Mauricito:

Went to a history museum a couple blocks up and Cam and Tara kicked it with us on the curb:

An entire room, a gallery of sorts, of epic noses, and just epic caricatures in general of famous Peruvians.  (No mention of the artist anywhere):

Solid Monday.

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