believe it or not, steve and i did not know what a fig tree was the first time we went to the languedoc. it is hard to image that now. but it is true. even though we were veteran travelers, and regular visitors to france, we had never spent enough time in the mediterranean to become acquainted with the fig tree. so the first time i saw one, in jean-luc’s garden, with its uniquely lobed leaves and dramatically veined undersides, i thought it was one of the more exotic trees i had ever seen. little did i know that it is ubiquitous there, and so resourceful that it is almost an unwanted invasive, growing our of every nook, and cranny, and hedgerow. it’s like mulberry here in minnesota. growing unwanted along every sidewalk and alley, and dropping its staining fruits on parked cars and sidewalks. ubiquitous or not, i’m still in love with fig trees. and the incongruously moist and fleshy fruits they manage to produce our of dry and stingy soil.