A long long time ago, I purchased a tomato plant for $4. I put it in a pot, surrounded it with a tomato trellis, and lovingly took care of it all summer. I had three lovely tomatoes, slowly ripening away. Every day I would go out and check on my babies, give them a little squeeze, and determine that they needed just one more day.
And then, without fail, on the morning of each one's perfect ripeness, I discovered its half-eaten remains. Who would have done this? Crows? My chihuahua? Some evil tomato-mauling thief?
Yes, it's sad, and I grieved appropriately, but I still had one tiny tomato left. I cared for it, nurtured it, determined that I would get at least one tomato from this plant. I threw an entire summer's worth of tomato-growing labor into that little green sphere. I watched the tiny fruit slowly turn from green to red, but never get bigger than about an inch in diameter (this is mid-November, after all, and tomato season is a thing of the past).
And then, this morning, I look outside to check on my baby, and.....he's gone! Wait, hold on, calm down. I shifted my eyes down to the ground. There he was. Perhaps he attempted suicide in the night, to avoid the horrendous tomato-eating monster? I quickly rescued him and brought him into the warmth of the house.
For perspective, that's a 5-lb chihuahua sniffing the tomato. Told you he was tiny.
After all he's been through, watching his brothers and sisters get eaten (but being powerless to stop it!), the cold nights, the terrifying fall to the ground...I don't have the heart to eat him.