During the summer, I often peruse the metal picnic tables, not only for observing the passing clouds and contemplating but also for the enjoyment of food. Where better to lay a checkered, plastic table cloth, interrupt the red squares with clear Tupperware and paper plates and cups, and adorn such things with bounteous amounts of food: steaming grilled chicken bespeckled with salt, pink raspberry lemonade with ice, a side of Grandma's chunky mashed potatoes, and watermelon.
Out of all the foods listed above, I dislike watermelon the most. You might ask if it is because of the hard shell I must crack in order to get to the red fruit. Or maybe it’s the taste of water itself that has got me shying away, but really, watermelons just have the most despicable seeds to sort through. I hate them and they look like deer ticks. (It is then fortunate that science has gone so far as to pluck these seeds out of the very bellies of this fruit).
You see, no matter how insignificant watermelon seeds may seem, they wreak havoc on the inner sulci of my brain. I dislike chomping down on each and every one as I try to eat and I also think it looks very ridiculous when people spend their whole sunny picnic popping them out of their mouths.
However, I must face the fact that without these dark, tiny seeds, a source of my enjoyment and pleasure (that of consuming seedless watermelon) would be entirely squashed. For if you must know, inside these seeds reside a whole network of systems. At the center of the seed, an actual embryo is connected through tissue to the endosperm, which supplies nutrients to the fetal fruit. It is this system that allows the watermelon to grow and become an edible melon.
Like these seeds, many imperceptible events occur around us daily. For example, one morning I woke up, hastily dressed to go to work, came home and slept. I failed to notice the packed lunch, straightened bedclothes, and empty sink that were all in chaotic order before leaving. I also did not perceive my metabolism speed up as I scurried out of bed and began sweeping and mopping at the local university. Nor did I notice that by accidentally keeping my work key, the person who does my job at night had no access to important doors and rooms.
Beggars often go by unnoticed by the crowds of people who swarm by them to shop at outdoor malls, but the beggars notice the hunger pangs in their stomach and the emotional wretchedness that not many eyes have the capability of seeing.
Roses bloom suddenly and we realize we never saw them in bud. Pet kittens soon enlarge into lazy cats, like our children who just graduated high school last week. The tide comes in and before we know it, we're backed to the rocky wall with only fifteen feet to spare. Zits just seem to pop up out of nowhere and so do our cavities and backaches.
If we do not appreciate these seemingly insignificant moments of our lives, then we miss out. Suddenly, everything just happens to us without our realizing that it was ever occurring in the first place. We are plunged headlong into life without knowing where we are headed. But if we step back and look at the big picture and then step forward and look at the small picture, we won't miss anything.