Limas and Limones

I like consistency. I like it when I can differentiate between an orange and a tangerine, However, I’ve learned recently about some confusing happenings in the United States. Supposedly, they call lemons “limes”, and limes “???s”. If I were to ask them “What is a lemon?”, they will bring me a yellow lemon, the one that is elongated and has weird endings on its side. It gets even weirder when I go to my local restaurant, Irpavi II. There, when I ask for trout, they hand me a very tiny lemon, nearly the same size of a gumball. They are all “lemons” or “limes”, even though they all have different appearances and flavours. But why tho?

In La Paz, when I ask my local casera for “lemons”, she gives me the greenest, roundest, sourest lemons. Excellent for making a pastel-green lemonade, and seasoning all kinds of pescados.

The other sour fruit here in Bolivia is the sweet fruit called “lima”. It has a really thick skin, making it hard to peel. The peel can be liquified into a very tasty juice. I remember offering my foreign friends some of this juice. They didn’t want to taste it because it was “too green” and “feared it was really poison waste” (this really happened). Anyways, if you ignored them in Mercado Rodríguez, give them a go; they taste good!

Starting to see the problem here? When I ask for a lime, the sweet lime I use to make juices, in a store in the United States, the supermarket gives me lemons (at a super expensive price, but that’s an issue for another day), and when I ask for lemons, they give me a yellow impostor. So I bring them a lime, and they raise an eyebrow. How can I make my limas juice with “limes”? And my lemon seasoning with impostor lemons? Why is it all confusing?

So now you see, folks, why the lemon and lime industries in the United States are absolute messes. Nobody understands what anything means, lemons, limes, yellow lemons, and lime limes become synonymous, and when I ask for *my* kind of limes, they will give me a worthless lemon instead. Now, I eat my lemon pie with limas, my juice with impostor lemons, season my fish with limas, and bite into a sour lemon. We really do live in a society.

Mateo Andrade

It is I, Mateo. I enjoy rainy days and fauna. They call me funny. May not be accurate.

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