Experiment for moms’ cars: do bananas rot?

I have mentioned this in previous posts, but just in case you don’t remember or you never read my blog before (tsk, tsk, tsk…): I am a science nerd. I used to love science at school, especially chemistry. Science fascinates me, and as my fifth grader starts doing some of the stuff that I adore (like atoms, chemical reactions, and I KNOW I NEED TO GET A LIFE!!), he has to hide from me when he does his homework, otherwise I am bugging him non-stop. “Can I see your science book? Can I do this exercise with you?”

You might not realize it, but you live and breathe science all the time. And as a mom, you NEED science in order to keep your family ship afloat. Yeah! It’s THAT important for moms.

Take socks for example. I wrote a whole post about the disappearing socks that we all experience with our kids and husband. Had it not been for science, I would have accused my kids of throwing their socks in the trash, or eating them. Which I actually did (accuse them of, not eat the socks….) for many years. But I came back to my senses and established that the law of conservation (nothing gets created or disappears, everything gets transformed) is indeed universal: it even works with socks.

So today, I want to tell you about another experiment that I accidentally made a few years back. The question I am tackling is: do bananas rot? Well, the bigger question, really, is: “What kind of food can you leave at the back of your car without risking any contamination of some sort?” The obvious answer is: NOTHING! Just take everything out every day, what are you, mad??!

But that’s not practical, is it? So here is what I have established over the years:

Do not forget any milkshakes leftover. It stinks, it’s horrible. Plus, once it’s all rotten and yucky in the cup, a kid will for sure tip it over in the car, and then it will be hell for six months as you try to get rid of the vomit-like smell. NOT A GOOD IDEA!!! And as you read this, I KNOW that you agree, because ALL MOMS HAVE BEEN THERE. And for some of us, more than  once…

Make sure you pick up candies regularly, especially the sticky ones. Otherwise, you are good for replacing your seats after the gooey stuff has eaten through the leather – makes you wonder what it does to your inside…

Bananas: interesting fruit!! And potentially, moms’ life savers! Instinctively, you would think that it is a terrible idea to abandon bananas in your car for a long period of time. At least, that’s what I thought. Until I did just that…

Seven years ago, we moved from England to the US. The boys were 3 and 2 so needless to say that I was in a constant state of panic about everything on any given day. So just imagine my mental health on the day we had to move our entire life across the ocean. Not good…

I’ll just spare you the details of packing, shipping the dog, living in an empty house for three days, getting to fly with two toddlers. Because I can write a book about this move. I’ll just cut to the chase and go straight to the banana story.

We drove to the airport, in our car that we had not sold yet. Our plan was to leave the car at the airport for a few months, then fly back for a holiday and sell the car. We parked our car and unloaded all the stuff we were gonna fly with: suitcases, kids, teddy bears, fifty different snacks, bags full of toys. The stress was unbelievable, so it is no wonder I forgot to grab the bananas that had fallen out of the snack bag. Obviously, I only realized it when it was too late, and with everything going on, I really could not care less about a few bananas… Until we came back six months later…

As our plane landed in Manchester, I suddenly remembered the bananas that had been rotting in the car for half a year. Geez, this was going to be NASTY… The shuttle dropped us at the parking lot. We were gearing ourselves for the worst: for sure there were going to be horrendous smell, some kind of living organisms in there, stuff crawling all over the seats. And we were going to have to drive with all that company until we could get to a sanitizing place! Just writing this makes me itchy everywhere! My husband opened the car door and, WOW!!!! Nothing. Not a hint of a bad smell, no welcoming crowd of bacteria and slimy gooey bugs. Not even any bananas! Just a little pile of dust, where the bananas had been forgotten, that let out a sweet banana fragrance. Awwwww, bananas are awesome! Such a shame I am allergic to them!





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