In A Maritime Mood
I’ll show you my sardine if you’ll show me yours.
I’m sure it’s a sign of weirdness, but most of the souvenirs we’ve bought have been of a sardinical nature. Cans of sardines packed in all sorts of exotic spices and sauces are everywhere here, and right now a substantial number of them are occupying the trunk of our little rented Fiat. If it weren’t for the fact that it’s raining yet again and the trunk of said Fiat is rather far away I’d be showing you my treasure, but that time will surely come, as we’ll be eating them for ages once we get them safely home.
A couple of days ago we went to the wonderful fishing museum in Concarneau, where we got to clamber around on this decommissioned fishing boat and imagine the hard life of a fisherman. I especially sympathised with the hard life of a fishing boat’s cook
who had to do all of his cooking, sardines or otherwise, in this tiny cubby
and serve his special Catch of the Day in this little dining area.
Then yesterday in Douarnenez we went to the boat museum, full of well-curated treasures like this Portuguese fishing boat, which is certainly a lot more beautiful than is strictly necessary
and this sleek and shiny racing boat, which is no prettier than she should be. I’d wanted to go to Douarnenez specifically because it’s the legendary home of the best kouign aman in Bretagne, but alas, as it happened, instead I lunched on the most infuriating little floor-wipe of a so-called sardine galette, and fumed about it all afternoon as we sloshed cross-country to Perros-Guirec. Where, hallelujah,
a nice piece of fresh cod landed on my plate, in a sauce Bordelaise with more of that andouille de Guéméné, which I’m really coming to love. Although a mere sniff of mine inspired my little sardine to say “That’s an acquired taste and I definitely haven’t acquired it yet.”
The fact that this plate was followed by a delightful dessert of almond pudding with red fruits and fresh cherry sorbet didn’t hurt a bit either.
Here’s the view out the window as I type, and it looks likely to be another grey, drippy, boat-filled day. Not that I’m complaining, you understand.