Туннель любви

    We’ll get to the title shortly, But first: (I tried 16 times to get it to print the Russian first, ‘Туннель любви’ followed by “Tunnel of Love/Lubia” before giving up. A Xanga bug?
Note: It may be time in the rotation to publish an actual factual post. (The previous TMI saga was fiction, except for me riding out the ongoing nuclear crisis at home down-wind and down-stream. Sorry, nothing gross happened in fact. I was simply re-asserting ownership of the acronym TMI for its rightful owners by writing a purposely icky story.
My pattern, without willing it so, seems to be Parody, Spoof, Fabrication, Fake expose, and then Truth, sorta. I do apologize to readers who are never sure what’s real and what’s whole-cloth here. It’s become a sort of inside joke. Humorous, maybe, but a dis-service to trusting first-time readers.
Still, the pleasure of reading a confabulation and knowing it is such is itself a small gift I enjoy giving. Especially since I can’t write much about my job, (and I can’t even tell you why not,) Ok, on
with the Lubia Truth.

Lubia is a long string-bean, associated, here in Israel at least, with Iraqis. Eaten year round but especially on Rosh Hashanah. When the price goes way up. Yippie, I’ll be rich!
Maybe. Planting it for the first time, and in near-commercial quantity, I carefully Googled the
damn weed’s name, all the better to avoid mistakes.No luck. ‘Google Images’ returns mostly pix of Russian whores. Why? I suspected a virus, until it dawned on me that the Russian root word for ‘Love’ is… Lubya.
And try entering ‘Lubia growing’ instead and you get ‘Little Lubia is growing up fast; click here to see her tits.’ I passed on that.
Now Lubia, in a perfect world, wants to spread out flat on the ground in about 12 directions, with runners that get to 16 feet within a couple weeks. Hmm… I planted it a foot spacing, 3 feet between rows. Naive twas I. I had an impossible jungle already after two weeks.
Sooo… after nights of tormented doom-scenaria, I consulted with locals who grew the stuff, and got a variety of battle plans, each of which I am trying separately. The one I most like is pictured here, my Tunnel of Love ” (Russian: Туннель любви“. The plants are supposed to crawl up over the trellis, across its ‘ceiling’, and then down the other side, where they can fight with the Lubias coming in the opposite direction. I love a good vegetable war. Serves ’em right. Only problem so far is that my hands are aching from constantly tying the vines to strings. Must be my Arthuritus, or maybe corporal-tunnel syndrome.
Yes, of course I have a back-up plan; glad you asked. I can rent out the acreage for Russian
weddings. They’ll enter one end single and emerge married at the far exit. Magic. Anything for a buck.

Since I shot this, I’ve added plastic mesh, about 6 inch squares, to both sides and the top. Oughta be romantic as hell inside.

And here is another way to fight the demon. See the little red knots? They don’t tie themselves…


16 thoughts on “Туннель любви

  1. Roadkill_Spatula

    You’re spoiling those vines. They ought to have to fight their way sunwards like the rest of us.That’s one heck of a fine-looking trellis. What’s the gourd-melon-squash-looking thing to the right?

  2. jsolberg

    @Roadkill_Spatula – Thanks, it looks mucho más impresionante today, after the screening.The ‘melon’, is a cucumber (US version) which I allowed to get ‘mature’ so I’ll have seeds this fall. No one here can get used to my larger-than-life veggies; I even have trouble selling them. Israelis buy zucchini the size of a lady’s thumb. I show up with my ‘US, the world power’ “two to a wheelbarrow”. specimens and they run and hide.Anyway, Tim, I’ll try to update photos on this as the jungle encroaches. (What I really need is a nice Mayan pyramid. Perfect framework for growing.)

  3. ordinarybutloud

    Why apologize for fiction?? Your heading says “13% less fictitious!” I’ve always assumed that meant your blog is about 87% fiction. LOVE the beans. That’s an impressive garden you’ve got going on there.

  4. elgan

    My father used to scour the curbs clean of discarded Christmas trees every New Year’s day and drag them to our backyard, where he “planted” them in raised beds come spring for all manner of vines to grow on: beans, cukes, squash. Your post just brought that memory back vividly. I’ve always preferred bush beans myself; much less labour intensive. Well, maybe that’s because I’m closer to the ground than you are, making harvesting them easier. One must consider these things. That’s one long chuppa you got there.

  5. jsolberg

    @ordinarybutloud – I value your thoughts on fact and fiction. It’s always a quandary: labeling a spoof beforehand takes some of the fun out of it, yet prevents unplanned pregnancy. So to speak. (Little latex humor)You are a good enough writer to whole-cloth Telluride, flat tires, and wounded Valkyries riding bikes… and we’d never know the truth.

  6. jsolberg

    @elgan – Great to evoke memories. The last Xmas tree here was probably during the Crusades though. seriously, the problem with lubia is that it doesn’t do climb by itself. The typical habit is ground-based runners. None of those curling tendrils to self-attach. So the ideal regimen is , oh, a dozen plants per city block, spaced equally. After the Apocalypse.

  7. Lovegrove

    Hey, you got on the Top Blogs with just a handful of comments on a blog about lubricated love tunnels in gardens of delight and partly in some barbarian snow-driven gibberish. How’d ya manage dat, mon ami? Anyway, stop  russian about and being a slav to your emotive motives.

  8. jsolberg

    @Lovegrove – It is, of course, partially a secret formula: who appeareth on the FP. I seem to get there frequently, whether by merit, grace, or pity I shall never know. (I get very few comments from new readers referred by ‘explore’. Possibly I’m an acquired taste.) News: I found the first two beans this evening. Let the madness begin!

  9. jsolberg

    @rubys_garden – An interesting suggestion, twist ties. I use yarn, which biodegrades, is soft on the fragile stems, and..um… free, not including cutting it into 15 cm pieces for what seems like hours.All this for a bean I eat only if I’m tortured into it. Whole, the strings get caught in your teeth like dental floss, and as dry beans? There are much less painful competitors. And I planted most of ’em also. Turning out to be a large and largely pleasant ‘hobby’/ JS

  10. Lovegrove

    So there has bean? Can one be a hasbeen if one never was been?I’m busy trying to figure a way of growing baked beans. I’ve got the tomatos  and the beans. Its a bugger growing the tins though.

  11. jsolberg

    @Lovegrove – Da, Ich haz beanz.Ha, I too search for the Holy Grail of quick nutrition; best attempt so far was sweet peas, half of which I ate in the field off the plants as I walked around and worked. No fuss, no muss. Both Limas and Tin are of Peruvian, if not Incan-descent. That oughta light a bulb somewhere in your aspirations.


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