There was a cherry festival up in Hammana, a mountain village some 40 km above Beirut. I always thought that all fruit was harvested in fall, but then I am obviously a city girl. Hammana seems to be famous for its cherries; another fact I was unaware of.
A. stayed home; there are only so many activities you can drag a disinterested teenager to, and a cherry festival is not one of them. And so it was just H. and I.
There wasn’t much at the festival, apart from cherries, of course, and so I was glad to have left that teenager lying on the couch at home, switching between the TV, his phone, MSN and his Facebook account.
There was cherry picking though. We were given a lesson on how to pick cherries; by the stem, don’t rip off the entire branch, and dark red cherries only. You wonder what kind of people they must get picking cherries, if these are the instructions given. And while the lady warned ‘not to touch the branches’, I saw H. disappearing up into a tree. It was funny to see that the majority of the cherry pickers were foreigners, just as there was a rather large representation of the foreign community at the festival. On the other hand, if you go to these summer village festivals in France, the majority of the visitors are tourists as well, so maybe it makes perfect sense. The scenery is stunning, against a backdrop of the Sanine mountain. The waterfall I had visited recently had already dried up. And with bags and bags of personally picked cherries (who – by the way – costs just as much as pre-picked cherries), we went home again. And now I’ve got to find myself some cherry pie recipes.