08 January 2010
Fish on Fridays; Ice Fishing by the Dam
In winter I get up and night and dress by yellow candlelight/in summer quite the other way/I have to go to bed by day. (Robert Louis Stevenson)
It's light at 4:30 p.m. now, and that adds to the cheerful feeling we all get as we head for home in deepest winter. Of course, not all offices close that early. Some of us leave for work before daylight and return home at dusk. Some of my days are like that. But never Friday, although by the time my husband and I finished our errands it was indeed inky black outside.
As we drove over the West Bridge to River's Bend Road, we saw a half dozen or so ice fisherman huddle around a trio of shanties just below the dam. This is a prime spot for fishing, just north of the old mill. It almost looked like fun. I could see the fishermen moving about, toasting their hands above small heaters outside the shanties.
But we had broiled cod and roasted potatoes from the deli inside our grocery bags, the perfect Friday night meal for any time of year. Sometimes humble meals that someone else made are just the ticket after a long and cold week.
It was really wonderful, flaky and white and not overly fishy. The potatoes were gently browned and just a bit salty.
Eating fish on Friday, of course, always makes me think of the years of my life when I could think of eating nothing else on the last school day before the weekend. Fish sticks and French fries at noon, or salmon and peas. Lobster and shrimp dinners when the family sampled other restaurants on my father's night off. (He ordered steak, of course, but this was before I learned to love a good filet.)
At the moment, I am contemplating integrating fish-only Fridays into my life again, not for any religious reasons, mind you, but because it just plain tastes good and is good for you. There is something comforting about small pleasure like this.
Here's one of my favorite old posts on fish.