Passionfruit: five stars for what is usually a five star fruit. New readers are recommended to review my previous review on the pineapple. In many ways, pineapple and passionfruit are companion fruits: they are both synonymous with summer, they both provide a deliciously sweet tang, and they would both be awarded five stars on any reasonable fruit review scale. Here, the similarities end. While pineapples can only legally be eaten raw and unadulterated, the passionfruit is rarely eaten on its own. It is delicious with yoghurt, ice cream, or used to ice a cake. This specimen must have been the sweetest, most wonderful passionfruit that I have ever eaten. I scooped it into a glass and drank it with soda water and lemon. Stay hydrated, friends.

One summer, we went down to our estate at Gingrich Grove. The house had been abandoned for some time since the outbreak of war, and this was our first opportunity to go down and assess the decay. We made it a hundred metres off the road and onto the access path, and we could go no further. Syzygy and I walked ahead with machetes, doing our best to cut through the dense foliage. The air was thick and wet. I found it necessary to remove my shirt and trousers, ignoring Syzygy’s advice.

Some hours later we arrived at the main house, which was surrounded by a large clearing. Here, the only vegetation consisted of short saplings and ground covering plants. The house itself was covered with vines on every surface. The large flowers, with their spider-like tendrils, moved around in the slight breeze. I was hypnotised by the prospect of whatever strange fruit such flowers could produce. I resolved at once: we would perform all necessary maintenance on the house, but under no circumstances would we remove the vines until after we had tasted their fruit.