Learned how to split coconuts today using a simple contraption:
My host father then proceeded to explain to me how the coconut tree exemplifies the Indian notion of avoiding waste. The inside can be eaten. The middle layer can be used to make rope. The hard, outer shell is burned as firewood. The trunk of the tree can be used to build roofs. Even the stems on the coconut tree leaves can be collected and tied together to make a good broom. From top to bottom, every part of the tree is utilized.
(originally written 2/14/11)