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For Want of a Mango

by Katherine Allen

“Isabella, we’re starving, we have no choice.”

“No! I can’t do that! Harold, how could you even suggest such a thing!

“You’d rather die?!”

“There are worse things in life, you know.”

Harold sighed as he looked at his wife. Isabella was beautiful, creamy skin, long red hair, and her figure! They had both worked so hard to keep in shape. It had become an integral part of their lives. Every day after work they went to the gym and worked out for at least three hours. They recorded everything that they ate, the calories, the vitamins and minerals, making sure that they got the perfect balance of everything.

This was their 25th anniversary. Harold had planned to surprise Isabella, and he picked the perfect thing: a fitness retreat in the heart of South America, and she had been so thrilled. So was he; he had noticed that both of them had packed a few ounces on. They had been having a lovely time, swimming, jogging, eating pureed carrots.

That morning they had decided to go for a hike. And, not asking for a guide, they went — and promptly got lost.

So here they were, in the middle of the jungle, lost. They had no food, no map. Harold had found a Mango tree, it wasn’t much but it would keep them alive.

“Isabella, eat this now. You need strength.”

Isabella burst into tears, “How can you ask me to eat something with no calorie label? I don’t know the iron balance, the omega-12 content... I don’t even know how many grams of carbohydrates there are in it. How can I face my Pilates instructor if I don’t have it written down?

“Please, Harold, I want to go home, we can get some low-carb pita bread, and some dolphin-safe tuna, with plenty of omega-3 fats, then some low-fat mayonnaise. Everything will be nice and labeled and perfect.”

Rescuers found them soon, and Isabella got her low-carb, dolphin-safe, low saturated-fat sandwich. And, just to be safe, Harold memorized the nutritional facts of a mango.

Copyright © 2007 by Katherine Allen

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