The East Coast Fish & Chip Blues

I have often said how very lucky I am to have been embraced by a great crowd of Big Dog people on this coast, and after mentioning in my first NaPoWriMo post how the smell of vinegar could trigger fish & chip cravings, one of those Big Dog people decided that I might like that for our lunch today.

Val usually drops by on Mondays, bringing her Newf Molly, she of the soft expression and gentle nature, and Val also brings Tim Horton’s tea, which I love and will not apologize for wanting to marry.

If I’m rambling on, and I know I am, it’s because I am tired and have PMS symptoms. Yes, that’s right. I have PMS symptoms, still, though I’m in (gasp!) menopause. AND of course, the ALS. Now, seems to me if you get a serious illness then you ought to be able to be to recuse yourself from such horrible add-ons as menopause, right? (Who do I talk to about getting a by for that?)

So back to the fish & chips. You know, if you’ve been reading, and I’ll repeat it now, that out here I was horrified to find that halibut is typically used for fish and chips. HALIBUT. And the use of that firm, white-fleshed, exquisite, hold-up-to-a-million-flavours (which I would marry, if I wasn’t already engaged to TH tea with double cream NOT milk and no sugar thank you) is not only sacrilegious in the Church of Seafood (of which I am a high priestess) but also expensive.

For three pieces of halibut (Val made the wise choice of picking up three pieces after I said one for me would be plenty because clearly she knows me well enough to judge that one piece wouldn’t cut it but a piece and a half each for lunch would be just right), so yeah, for three pieces of halibut and a large order of fries plus two tins (cans but not if you grew up in Newfoundland where I did and where pop came in tins and was called “Coke” or “drink” regardless of its flavour. Let me demonstrate. “Going to the store, want a tin of drink?” or “Bring me back a Coke, I’ll have a cream soda, luh”.)

Where was I? Oh, yes, 3 pieces of halibut, a large fries, and 2 pop were 27.00 and that is not even the most expensive fish & chips I’ve had out here. For comparison, right now at Fredie’s Fantastic Fish House in Halifax, which is indeed Fantastic, and which I miss dearly, a 3 piece fish & chips is 13.50. It’s made with haddock, which is how it should be, if all is right in the world, unless the cod shortage was over, in which case cod is always number one.

Now, don’t get me wrong, this particular fish & chips was very, very good. And I really appreciated Val stopping to bring it over, and yes I treated today in case you were wondering if I was taking advantage of the Oh, I’m Dying card to have people pay for stuff for me (not yet), but it still was not East Coast Fish & Chips.

Without further preamble, I give you the East Coast Fish & Chips Blues. Please feel free to accompany your reading with mournful harmonica sounds.

East Coast Deep Fried Fish & Chips Blues

Pungent and potent, the deadliest smell
The lure of the vinegar, I know it well
Memories of where I most like to use
Brought on the East Coast Deep Fried Fish & Chip Blues

It wasn’t so long that I had to wait
Piled high and wide, a heck of a plate
I scarfed it all down, there was nothing to lose
I had the East Coast Deep Fried Fish & Chip Blues

The batter was fluffy, the fish cooked just right
The fries were handcut, made my eyes all alight
And though it was tasty, filled me right to my shoes
I still got that East Coast Deep Fried Fish & Chip Blues

Now halibut’s good, don’t get me wrong
But it’s for the cod, or haddock I long
And though I enjoyed it, I got some bad news
There’s NO curin’ that East Coast Deep Fried Fish & Chip Blues…


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