Wednesday, February 22, 2012

The Entree

The creek housed many creatures. Leeches, minnows, frogs, worms, crawdads, turtles and water bugs. Brenda and I grew up looking into the water watching critters swim about, turtles sun themselves on rocks, and frogs croaking. The creek was our own nature laboratory.

When we moved to Wisconsin, we were introduced to several new things. Snowmobiles were new. Friday night 'all you can eat' fish fries. Homemade cheese. Corn roasts. Brats.

Once our neighbors invited us to a cookout. Cookouts during the short summer season occurred about every weekend. A big pot boiled with spices floating on the top. Soon I was facing crawdads who were facing back at me.

"We're going to eat these?!" Visions of crawdads in the creek mucking up the dirt on the bottom came to mind. Dad always said they were dirty, bottom feeders. Mud, muck and now entree.

After the initial shock, I was shown how to pull the shell apart to expose the meat. Apologetically, I looked the critters in the eyes and tore off their heads. I worked to peel the little guys coming up with the ratio of 4 crawdads peeled equaled 1 bite. A lot of work, a pile of heads and a queasy tummy.

I think the crawdads and I see eye to eye now. I will let them alone to replenish the streams and muck the mud. Seems only fair to us both.

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