“I’ve never really wanted to go to Japan. Simply because I don’t like eating fish. And I know that’s very popular out there in Africa.”

Last night it rained a bit, but today is sunny. The paper forecasts a chance of showers and temperatures in the 70’s. It seemed pretty warm when I went out for breakfast. I had the car air going but I had also opened a window. I wanted a bit of fresh air. When I got home, this part of the house felt cool. The sun hasn’t yet worked its way around.

My peace and quiet is gone. I can hear the new renters next door. They sit on their little deck, and their conversations are perfectly clear. Gracie isn’t used to strange sounds from next door so she gets up and checks every time a car moves or a door slams. One of the ladies next door was born in Maine, not in May, and she said it so loudly Gracie ran out back and barked. I am considering that an intruder alert.

My dance card has a few entries this week. On Wednesday is a play in Chatham and on Thursday friends are coming to dinner, my first entertaining gig of the summer. I should have fireworks!

I love most fish and shellfish. Salmon is an exception. Pink fish is unnatural. I also don’t like oysters, especially on the half shell. They can’t slide down fast enough. Steamed clams do have a bit of a resemblance to those oysters but steaming them then washing them in broth and dunking them in butter makes those clams quite tasty. My father, sister and I would sit at the kitchen table eating steamers. That always grossed out my mother who wouldn’t even eat fried clams with bellies. What in the heck kind of New Englander doesn’t eat clams with bellies? I only like fresh tuna; the stuff in cans is disgusting no matter what you add to it. Crabs are a lot of work. but I love crabmeat. We used to go down to the rocks and pull off the mussels just under the surface then we’d steam them and devour them. Nothing was as fresh as those mussels.

I haven’t been clamming in years, but I still vividly remember one Sunday. We were on the Brewster flats when the fog started to come in, and it came in quickly and scared the heck out of us. We grabbed our shovels and baskets and ran to the shoreline which, in only a short time, we could barely see. A few more minutes, and the shoreline would have disappeared, and we would have been stuck in the fog not knowing in which direction to walk. Yelling would have been useless. The fog distorts sound. When we got to the beach, we sat in the sand and watched the fog rolling in and covering everything. You couldn’t even see the water. We were lucky that day. We filled our baskets, got safely to shore and had steamers for dinner.

I love the fog, especially in the mornings coming off the water. That Sunday was the only time I have ever been afraid of fog.

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11 Comments on ““I’ve never really wanted to go to Japan. Simply because I don’t like eating fish. And I know that’s very popular out there in Africa.””

  1. john Says:

    Sandy would argue with you to the death over the qualities of Salmon. She even had a Salmon pizza our last time in Norway – at $30 for a12″ pie. Don’t go to Oslo hungry. Me? I love trout, served with too much butter. I can’t get enough go it. A wonderful fishCanned tuna’s for our favorite comfort food – tuna casserole, but nothing else.

    We don’t do crabs, clams, oysters or mussels. They’re not too prevalent along the shorelines of Illinois rivers. I loved ’em the years I spent in Panama along with the greatest fish dinners ever served… Fried Corvina at the Balboa Yacht Club. The most treasured dining memory of anyone who served in the Canal Zone.

    We tend to eat a lot of fish compared to our friends but it’s still not the main staple of our diet. Maybe if I could catch the damn things….. Sandy & I went fishing for the first time last week and basically spent a few hours drowning some of the unlucky residents from my wormery. I can sit all day without a bite and it really doesn’t bother me, while Sandy needs a nibble every five minutes (in the angling sense) or she’s ready to leave. So,,, out comes her books or her quilts. Sandy’s my timekeeper. When she’s tired of reading/sewing, it’s time to pack up. Fishing, the only sport that you can either drink or sleep while participating. Or both. We get some fresh air. I get the hope of the hunt. Sandy has some quiet time. The worms are the only ones who don’t have a good day.

    • katry Says:

      John,
      I wouldn’t even argue. Nothing will change my mind, and I have tried salmon several times with the same result. I had the best trout I’ve ever had in a small mountain town in Venezuela. The bus stopped, and several passengers took us to a restaurant and had us order the mountain trout (mostly by pointing. My Spanish never included trout). It was magnificent.

      I grew up eating far too much canned tuna on Fridays to want it ever again. My mother and sister loved tuna melts at Woolworth’s.

      Red snapper in Jamaica is another memorable meal for me as was the rock lobster just caught then cooked for me in Ghana.

      Living near the ocean means I am spoiled when it comes to fresh seafood.

      My brother is a fly fishing guide. He has been doing that for years for Orvis. One of my nephews loves to fish while the other loves to eat it. He never caught the bug from his father the way his brother did.

      In Colorado they are all fishermen. My brother-in-law and nephews love to fly fish in rivers. Even my nephew’s 7 year old son is already a fisherman-placed 3rd out of 50 in a tournament. The year old son of my niece was given a rod to hold with a fish on it-never too young.

      I haven’t fished in a long time. I do remember the fun of catching something!

  2. Caryn Says:

    Hi Kat,
    In my later years I have learned to love fresh salmon and fresh tuna but for most of my life it had to be canned. The salmon had to be red sockeye and all the bones and grey stuff had to come out. Tuna had to be white and packed in water.

    Once a year my father would host a barbecue for 20+ people in our back yard. There were the usual hot dogs and hamburgers, potato salad, corn on the cob etc. But this annual event also offered steamers and lobsters.
    My father would order the clams and lobsters ahead of time and pick them up the day before. They’d be on ice in bushel baskets in the cellar. When I walked into that part of the cellar I could hear several dozens lobsters clicking away.
    The clams would go through a purge in peppered and salted water. Everything was cooked in trash barrels placed over burning charcoal. It was like a huge crab boil except no crabs.
    Tasty memories.

    Cloudy and humid up here with nothing on the dance card.
    Enjoy the day.

    • katry Says:

      Hi Caryn,

      My mother had a huge clam bake in her back yard one summer. It was the best barbecue she ever had. Though it wasn’t the traditional cooked over rocks and covered with seaweed bake, it was just as tasty. I wish I knew your father back in the day!!

      It is now cloudy, but there is still a breeze. I just came inside from the deck. It is getting humid so I think that rain my happen.

  3. olof1 Says:

    We have much the same taste when it comes to seafood and fish 🙂 I like all kinds of clam but oystera are just awful 🙂 I don’t like salmon especially much nor do I like herring in any way but cooked or smoked. Pickled herring is an abomination and so is fermented herring.It smells awful and the consistence is awful too but I have to say I’ve tasted worse 🙂

    What’s the use in eating crab, lobster or crayfish if one only eat the claws? But I have to admit that I like canned Tuna, I’ve never eaten it any other way. I do love swordfish though.

    Hot and 100% humidity today, I don’t mind the heat as much as I mind the humidity, I think I might like living in a desert, no humidity there 🙂

    I’ll see my doctor tomorrow to leave some blood. The hip implants tend ti rise the level of metal ions in the blood and as long as they levels are low there’s no danger but if they rise high there’s a risk that both the bones and the muscles around the implants get destroyed. I’m not worried though, the levels were pretty low last year.

    Have a great day!
    Christer.

    • katry Says:

      Christer,
      Nope. I don’t like herring either in any form.

      The lobster tail is filled with meat, tons more than even the claws. We always tried to get the tail out in one piece. Crayfish is more then just the claws as well. Never will I eat canned tuna again.

      The humidity is bad here as well. Thunder storms all over the state but not here. It is supposed to be better tomorrow.

      I had to go and give blood last week as I’ll be seeing my doctor next week, and he always wants a blood test first.

      Enjoy your evening!!

    • john Says:

      I finally learned to like pickled herring… but only a few bites per serving. I can’t imagine a Swede who doesn’t like herring or salmon. Here, in our town, if a Swede said that publicly he’d have to change his name to O’Brien.
      Now,,, of course every one gets a pass on not liking Lutfisk. I think even the Devil himself gives a polite ‘no thank you’ when offered that stuff.

      • olof1 Says:

        🙂 🙂 🙂 I’ve seen as a bit odd over here too 🙂 and You’re so right about lutfisk, that is an abomination to mankind 🙂
        Christer.

  4. Beto Says:

    The only time I’ve ever enjoyed Salmon, I caught it and roasted it fifty feet from the river whence it came.
    My favorite though… White Bass we hooked the same morning. Over fifty pounds of fillet after the cleaning. Marinated in Riesling Wine vinted a mile away and fresh herbs growing wild there. Basket roasted to caramelize the wine and butter, served on wild rice and roasted pecans.

    • katry Says:

      Beto,
      I don’t know if even that would tempt me to eat salmon.

      I like bass, haddock and sole. Mostly they serve haddock in the fish restaurants around here, but it doesn’t matter to me as it is all fresh.

      That sounds delicious!!!


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