Banana: three and a half stars for what is usually a three and a half star fruit. If you are hungry, you can eat a banana. If you are going on a train ride, you can pack a banana for your journey. Eaten unaccompanied, as in the case of this perfectly-ripened specimen, it is a convenient snack. If you want excitement from your fruit, however, you will need to eschew convenience and instead prepare one of the many delicious banana dishes: for example banana butterscotch, banana sundaes, banana omelettes, banana bread, banana mead, banana cream pies, or banana smoothies. Have a banana.

Outside, the wind is howling. The sky started to get brighter a few hours ago, and now it is already dark again. It must be December, which means it is almost time to prepare for the banana hunt. The banana hunt is an annual tradition at Salamander Manor. Preparation for the hunt begins by ordering a large palette of green, unripe bananas. For the purpose of prolonging the hunt, younger bananas are preferred. When the shipment arrives, the whole family gathers in the old milking stables. Syzygy, my batman, sets a fire and melts the wax. My eldest nephew separates each hand of bananas into its constituent bananas. I carefully dip each banana in the soft wax. This wax coating will slow the ripening process and preserve the banana’s freshness. The wax sets quickly, and the bananas are ready to be hidden. My friend Balphox generally hides the bananas. He knows the house well enough to find good hiding spots, and can be trusted as an impartial party to favour neither one of us above another. Throughout the remainder of the year, we are each assigned a banana basket. Every banana that we find, we place in our own basket – that is, whenever I find a banana I place it in my basket; while whenever my eldest nephew finds a banana, he places it in his basket. We continue until the new year’s eve. Then, we show each other our baskets. Whoever has the heaviest banana basket is deemed the winner, and earns the right to wear the banana hat for the entirety of the next year. Long live the banana baron(ess).