(This was originally written in Afrikaans and was translated by Marius Swart for my book, Toortsie’s Banting Bash.) Daily post – Fish
The men in our area love fishing. I did not always realise this, as my dad did not really fish. His brother died when a wave knocked him from a rock and he himself was also almost lost to the waters of the sea once while fishing.
Like many farmers here, we also had some land bordering the sea. It was a farm used mainly for grazing. For security purposes, the government expropriated a number of seafront farms in the late 1970s and early 1980s. These farms were combined and subdivided to form the Overberg Test Range, an air force base and an enlarged De Hoop nature Reserve.
Although my dad did not fish much, we always had fresh fish in our house. Fishermen who got access to the fishing waters through my dad ensured that we also got som of their catches, especially galleons.
In later years, when I had already married, my dad loved bringing me fresh fish. These fish were bought directly from fishermen. After he died, though, my supply of fresh fish dried up except for the odd occasion when we bought a fish at Struisbaai’s harbour. Frozen fish was our fate.
When the snoek was coming in thick and fast in the Cape, someone often went and bought a whole bakkie load and brought it back here. We were then quick to buy enough so that our workers could also get some. Unfortunately, ther’s always the danger of a ‘pap’ snoek, especially when it is handled in bulk like this.
I truly never knew that one could buy fresh fish at Checkers, cleaned well and cut op just as you like it. Can you believe it! What a delightful discovery! Suddenly I could get my hands on some fresh fish again – something I am very glad about.
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