Shake, Shake The Mango Tree

I was visiting a friend for lunch and we were chatting on her porch as we suddenly saw a large bamboo pole emerging from the base of the tree next to her house. The pole kept rise upwards and we though gosh, this must be a very long stick. A second later a man emerged from the lower tree growth and was shimmying up the tree, holding this long pole! On the end of the pole was a basket that looked just like the top of a large tiki torch without the kerosene canister. The man would reach the pole out to the ripe mangoes, shake the basket around a bit, and they would fall in. His agility amazed us as he crept along the uppermost tree branches. Luckily he saw my watering mouth and tossed me a mango. After about 30 minutes of gathering mangoes the wind picked up and the tree was swaying viciously; then the rain began. The rain quickly becomes monsoon-like conditions (and often just as quickly ends). Although it was now pouring rain, the man would not cease collecting the precious mangoes. When your livelihood completely depends on the efforts you put in, you push yourself to work in even the worst conditions. Unfortunately in some situations, this leads to extremely unhealthy work environments, but thankfully labor laws and human rights groups are trying to install more regulations so that, specifically the textile industries, must maintain a certain environment for workers. While this man was probably just collecting some mangoes to sell on the side (or who knows, just to enjoy with his friends), I applaud his efforts, all as he  maintained a large smile.


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