What’s Red, Spiny, and Sweet?

September 11, 2013 — 23 Comments

Guatemala 2013 101

Does anyone know what these red, spiny things are?

I’ll give you a hint.

We came across these on the streets of Xenacoj before we passed the “laundry mat” that I talked about yesterday and before we arrived at the backyard party that I mentioned on Monday.

Do you give up?

They are called Rambutan.  They are originally from China, but they are also found throughout Central America.

When you peel away the spiny shell, a white grape-like fruit.  For more pictures and an explanation of how to eat a Rambutan, click here for the wikiHow link.

Guatemala 2013 102

As we walked by this street fruit stand, we stopped to look at this strange fruit.  Before we knew it, the missionary and his son were encouraging us to try one.  We asked if it was safe.  To which, he responded that they were safe based on the shell surrounding the fruit.

Within a little more encouragement, my wife and my kids were cracking open their first Rambutan.  I chickened out not wanted to risk getting sick so early in our trip.  Apparently, the risk was worth it as indicated by the sounds of satisfaction coming from my family.

I have to give my family credit.  They took a leap of faith.

Was it a big leap?  I suppose not, but it still took a certain amount of trust to believe our missionary hosts.

I wonder how many wonderful things we miss, because we are too afraid to take leap.

I don’t know about you, but life is too short to miss out.  I’m not suggesting that you do something stupid.  I’m merely recommending that you get outside of your comfort zone and try something different – something that requires risk.  As I’ve shared before, going to Guatemala was a leap of faith for our family, and I can tell you that it was completely worth it.

Maybe it means going on a mission trip to someplace like Guatemala.

Maybe it means trying a strange piece of fruit (or other food).

Maybe it means walking across the street to talk with a neighbor.

Take time to try something new TODAY!

When have you taken a risk by trying something new?  How was the experience?  What was your holding you back?  What was it like after taking the risk?  What risk do you need to pursue?

(For me, one of the risks that I need to pursue further is writing a book.  It’s been on my list of things to do for a while, but I seem to let other things (including fear) get in the way.)


Jon Stolpe


Christ-follower, husband, dad, engineer, manager, runner, blogger, sax player, group life fan, freelance writer, and the list goes on...
  • http://deuceology.wordpress.com Larry Carter

    I’m in the middle of that risk. I am about 1/3 of the way through writing that eBook I want to give away.

    • http://jonstolpe.com/ Jon Stolpe

      Can’t wait!

  • David Paul Stolpe

    Chinese food can eBeBeb freakish and challenge even the most adventurous eater. but during our three weeks in China we decided never to turn down any food opportunity. we had antibiotics and we knew that missing out on the opportunity to try new things was far worse than a days of the runs. we had the most amazing food for 3 straight weeks, and tried even the food that was made on the street for common working people. The worst thing that happened was that I ate a small piece of jellyfish that had not been cleaned properly and still had the toxin in it. My throat went numb for about an hour. but we had so much amazing food and it it was all worth the risk.

    • http://www.tnealtarver.wordpress.com TNeal

      When we lived in the Russia Far East, we could see the mountains in China. We got the pleasure of eating Russian, Chinese, and Korean food. I especially liked eating food from the street vendors. I didn’t get sick once from making the choice to eat out. Usually when I got sick from food, it happened at home due to an allergic reaction or plain stupidity (don’t get my wife started on the glow-in-the-dark Malaysian peas I ate).

      • David Paul Stolpe

        Love it.

  • Steve Y

    I going to ponder this one. For me, it is a comfort zone thing. Things that I need to be more proactive in are like inviting others to study, inviting visitors at church in my home, etc. I still haven’t tried sushi, but that is not high on my list.

    • http://jonstolpe.com/ Jon Stolpe

      I love sushi!

  • http://www.tnealtarver.wordpress.com TNeal

    Ellen and I currently are going through a leap-of-faith experience as we prepare to pack up and move back to my home state. It’s very unsettling to go from the known to the unknown. Despite the fact that it’s a return to Texas for me and being closer to family, it’s still moving away from a community we’ve invested a dozen years in, where people know us and we know them, where we’ve made deep connections with friends, and where we know where to take both the car and the dog when they need special attention.

    • http://jonstolpe.com/ Jon Stolpe

      But won’t you miss the custard?

      • http://www.tnealtarver.wordpress.com TNeal

        Fried cheese curds! That’ll be missed. Austin has a Culver’s.

  • Arny

    Blogging again.

    • http://jonstolpe.com/ Jon Stolpe

      So glad!!!

  • http://www.lilykreitinger.com/ Lily Kreitinger

    Rambutan is delicious! Glad you accepted the challenge and ate it. The risk I need to pursue is seeing myself as a business owner and trusting that I can do it and leave the comfort of the cube and the paycheck.

    • http://jonstolpe.com/ Jon Stolpe

      Actually, I didn’t accept the challenge, but my wife and kids did. No, I’d love to go back and try one. I wonder if they sell them in the U.S.?

      • http://www.lilykreitinger.com/ Lily Kreitinger

        Attribute that to my lack of focus when scanning blog posts :0) Asian markets and international markets sell rambutan.

        • http://jonstolpe.com/ Jon Stolpe

          Thanks, I’ll have to investigate!

  • http://www.MakingTheComeback.com/ Travis Scott

    Never had Rambutan…but I will try if I have the opportunity!

    I think we are all a little nervous when we do anything outside of the norm. We learn to live life w/in “boundaries” throughout our whole life, so when we have the opportunity to do something that isn’t status quo; we get nervous.

    For me…it was changing careers after being an industry for 10 years. Now it is starting a podcast and website.

    • http://jonstolpe.com/ Jon Stolpe

      Share your podcast link here. I’d love to check it out!

      • http://www.MakingTheComeback.com/ Travis Scott

        Jon…Thx, but it’s still in the works. I have interviewed four people so far and am launching the site http://www.MakingTheComeback.com next week. Hopefully the podcast will go live in November!

        • http://jonstolpe.com/ Jon Stolpe

          Let me know when it goes LIVE. In the meantime, I just subscribed to you site.

          • http://www.MakingTheComeback.com/ Travis Scott

            Thx…will do!

  • David Paul Stolpe

    I will also just say that sometimes people don’t like going to the zoo with me as it sometimes becomes a tour of things I have eaten.

    • http://jonstolpe.com/ Jon Stolpe

      I could see that being a problem. You were always the more adventurous eater.