We were in a group of about twenty people, all spread out over the hillside in the pine forest. I was hoping to find nacidas – the only wild fungus I can reliably recognise on the island, because they look like little new potatoes poking out of the ground. Well I did find nacidas. I found three, and they were all too old to eat. (When they’re old the inside turns from white to grey.)
What I did find was lots of a mushroom called Russula Turci. They grow under the pine needles and it’s easy to walk over them before you see them. I pulled up enough to fill my basket.
And then everybody got together to show the expert (a high-school science teacher called Pepe) what they’d found and have it identified. And we got a little lecture on how to collect fungi so that it could fruit again. You don’t pull it up, you cut it.