Beating Around the Bush

Alert observers around here may have noticed in recent days a cyclist going even more slowly than normal along one stretch of road, sometimes even on the wrong side of it, paying more attention to the hedgerow than the (fortunately non-existant) traffic. The cyclist, for I am she, has been looking for that damned gooseberry bush ever since I first met gooseberry man and has been seriously beginning to wonder if he and his gooseberries were an elaborate, if disappointingly quotidian, hallucination.

Today, I thought I’d give it one last go. I’d even googled pictures of gooseberry bushes to be sure I knew what to look our for. I cycled down along the stretch of the road where I’d see gooseberry man at effectively walking pace, peering at every bush. The whole way down the road, and nothing. Crossed at the crossroads, picked up speed, glanced over to my left and bingo.


Please tell me these are gooseberries …

Of course by this time I was running late so I didn’t have time to stop to pick any, and besides, I actually have no idea how to tell if they are ripe. A quick further google suggests that they are ripe when they are neither too soft nor too hard, which leaves me none the wiser. I shall have to go down and give them all a squeeze tomorrow.


5 Responses to Beating Around the Bush

  1. Charles says:

    Eat one, if it’s too tart it’s not ripe, if it’s slightly sweet it’s ripe. They never get very sweet.

    By the way Somerset has learned from Barnet council. While driving onto the M5 South at Taunton, as one accelerates out of the roundabout and up the slip road there is a faded red blur across the road. Yes it is a cycle path! I only spotted what it was for when I saw a stranded cyclist….

  2. mynameismj says:

    Gooseberries make good chutney’s and jams.

  3. disgruntled says:

    They ended up in crumble, and very nice it was too. Interesting about the feral gooseberries, too

  4. […] this year – not only did I completely miss the moment for gathering gooseberries from the travelling gooseberry bush, but I’ve barely had any wild raspberries – or even any blackberries. The neighbour has […]

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