Monte Gordo, Portugal – Fresh Sea Food – by Catherine Kolar. The North Star Reports: Global Citizenship and Digital Literacy, at NorthStarReports.org and facebook.com/NorthStarReports
It was late February and even though classes had only started a week or so earlier I was ready for a break. Sevilla is beautiful and all, and my classes were interesting, but I needed an adventure– and then out of nowhere an adventure fell into my lap. A friend of mine had found a super cheap hotel deal in Monte Gordo, a little coastal town in Portugal, and wanted to know if I’d like to go on a little expedition. The decision to go was simple because I love Portugal, and after such a long time without seeing Lake Superior, the ocean sounded quite wonderful.
We set off Friday afternoon on a short drive over the border to the oldest country in Europe. In my travels to and from Portugal the parts of every trip that stick with me the most are those involving food, and this trip was no exception.
When we had just been seated at a table on the deck of a restaurant overlooking the seashore and were waiting for our drinks, I noticed a fisherman on the beach gathering up his rods, tackle, and bucket full of fish before walking towards us. He took his bucket to the back of the restaurant and left a few minutes later with a much lighter bucket and a smile on his face. When the waiter returned to our table with our drinks he asked if we were interested in the fish of the day, and when we replied yes he told us to wait just one second and ran inside to return with a tub of fish. “He just brought these to us,” the waiter grinned, pointing at the retreating fisherman. “It’s the freshest fish in all of Portugal!”
I had never been presented my menu in such a way. The waiter then went on to explain about each fish but it all went over my head as the majority of my fish vocabulary at that time consisted of the words “salmon” and “tuna.” I was a bit overwhelmed by the experience and didn’t know what to choose so I played it safe and ordered coquinas, a variety of tiny clam.
My food arrived and I dug into the tender, sweet, and briny itty-bitty mollusks, savoring every bite and being careful not to grind my teeth on the little bits of sand that had evaded the chef’s careful cleaning. I’d never noticed before how something cooked simply in olive oil could be a million times better than if it had been cooked in butter. All of a sudden, I saw something hiding on my plate that could have gotten me a free meal in the states or have been cause for a lawsuit.
“Look, Daniel! I got a rock!”
“Well,” he said, not fazed in the least, “he said they were fresh. There is the proof.”
Please contact Professor Liang if you wish to write for The North Star Reports — HLIANG (at) css.edu
See also, our Facebook page with curated news articles at http://www.facebook.com/NorthStarReports
The North Star Reports: Global Citizenship and Digital Literacy (http://NorthStarReports.org) is a student edited and student authored open access publication centered around the themes of global and historical connections. Our abiding philosophy is that those of us who are fortunate enough to receive an education and to travel our planet are ethically bound to share our knowledge with those who cannot afford to do so. Therefore, creating virtual and actual communities of learning between college and K-12 classes are integral to our mission. In five semesters we have published 200 articles covering all habitable continents and a variety of topics ranging from history and politics, food and popular culture, to global inequities to complex identities. These articles are read by K-12 and college students. Our student editors and writers come from all parts of the campus, from Nursing to Biology, Physical Therapy to Business, and remarkably, many of our student editors and writers have long graduated from college. We also have writers and editors from other colleges and universities. In addition to our main site, we also curate a Facebook page dedicated to annotated news articles selected by our student editors (http://www.facebook.com/NorthStarReports). This is done by an all volunteer staff. We have a frugal cash budget, and we donate much of our time and talent to this project. We are sponsored by St. Scholastica’s Department of History and Politics and by the scholarly Middle Ground Journal: World History and Global Studies (http://theMiddleGroundJournal.org).
For a brief summary, please see the American Historical Association’s Perspectives on History, at: http://www.historians.org/perspectives/issues/2013/1305/Opening-The-Middle-Ground-Journal.cfm
Hong-Ming Liang, Ph.D., Editor-in-Chief and Publisher, The North Star Reports; Chief Editor, The Middle Ground Journal; Associate Professor of History and Politics, The College of St. Scholastica.
Kathryn Marquis Hirsch, Managing Editor, The North Star Reports.
(c) 2012-present The North Star Reports: Global Citizenship and Digital Literacy http://NorthStarReports.org ISSN: 2377-908X The NSR is sponsored and published by Professor Hong-Ming Liang, NSR Student Editors and Writers, The Department of History and Politics of The College of St. Scholastica, and the scholarly Middle Ground Journal. See Masthead for our not-for-profit educational open- access policy. K-12 teachers, if you are using these reports for your classes, please contact editor-in-chief Professor Liang at HLIANG (at) css.edu