Posted in Uncategorized, tagged arts, boats, fishermen, fishing, harbor, new bedford, new england demolition and salvage, orchard street manor, sea, whales, whaling museum on September 16, 2012 |
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My husband and I are often drawn to New England’s older postindustrial cities, with their walkable town centers and their old brick warehouses. They are sometimes called Gateway Cities because for generations they have served as immigrant gateways into the American life. We explored North Adams, Massachusetts, with Suzanne and Erik a couple years ago, and this weekend we went to New Bedford with Suzanne.
Once the whaling capital of the world, New Bedford today is home to an anxious fishing industry, clothing manufacturing, and tourism. We went to the Whaling Museum and came out feeling glad that most countries are more focused on whale preservation than whale hunting.
We sought out Portuguese restaurants and sat on the patio near an outdoor fireplace at one place. We knew there would be Portuguese restaurants as Portuguese speakers have come to New Bedford for generations — from Portugal, the Azores, Cape Verde, and Brazil.
At our beautiful Bed & Breakfast, the hosts (who have spent most of their working lives doing economic development overseas with US A.I.D.) told us that a large Guatemalan community has grown up in the city. They said that most of the Guatemalans speak an indigenous language, Spanish being a second language for them. That’s a particular challenge when Guatemalans go to the hospital as none of the staff speak that indigenous language.
My husband and Suzanne and I walked around. We passed lively Pentecostal churches and a storefront church full of dancers and clowns. We noted lamp posts bearing inspirational banners on how to be a good citizen or how to volunteer. I include one on “Responsibility.”
We also liked the cooperative shops run by members of the local arts community. And we had fun checking out a salvage warehouse for cool architectural bits, here. Among other things, it has rather a lot of bathtubs.
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Posted in Uncategorized, tagged boston, fishing, harbor, james hook, July 4, lobster, sailing, schooner, tall ships, world ocean school on July 4, 2012 |
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On Tuesday, a group from work set out at lunchtime for lobster rolls (and shrimp rolls and crab rolls) at James Hook & Co., whose golden lobster weathervane appeared in one of my previous posts.
Then we joined the crowds on the Harbor Walk to luxuriate in tall ships and a gorgeous sky.
A vessel flying the Jolly Roger was dwarfed by the triumphs of modern capitalism. (I won’t say “piracy” because I have no idea what goes on in those buildings.)
A teaching schooner called the “Roseway,” from the World Ocean School, was taking tourists out.
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Posted in Uncategorized, tagged commercial fishing, eigg, england, fish, fish farm, fishing, Highland Council, isle, nature, scotland, small isles national scenic area, uphilldowndale, wordpress on September 9, 2011 |
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In case you just tuned in, this blog was started at the invitation of my daughter, who is the founder of the birthstone-jewelry company Luna & Stella. Sometimes I blog about the jewelry, but Suzanne told me to write about whatever interests me. Already a customer who was previously wary of online purchasing found the blog and wrote Suzanne that it helped her decide that Luna & Stella was good people.
The blog is currently housed at WordPress, which makes life easy for a neophyte like me. One thing that is fun at WordPress is clicking on posts from the other bloggers, posts that are on the Freshly Pressed page or found by clicking on a key word at the Tags page.
Today I got quite interested in an entry from a WordPress blogger in northern England who calls herself Heather Uphillanddowndale. She shows her photographs of a lovely Scottish island and talks about its fight against a major commercial fish farm.
I used to think fish farms made a lot of sense, but lately I have read about possible environmental damage and overcrowding that can spread disease to wild fish.
Heather quotes from a statement by island residents: “Highland Council has recently received an initial application to site a fish farm off the east coast of Eigg, north of Kildonan. The site identified covers an area extending to 20ha (this equates to 28 football pitches) & would consist of 14 x 30m diameter cages which would be serviced by a 10m x 10m permanently sited barge (powered by diesel generator).
“The community has considered this proposal at length. The outcome of the resulting ballot which had an 86% turnout was 97% against the development.
“Eigg lies within the Small Isles National Scenic Area. A large fish farm would have a considerable negative impact on the approach to the island and could also impact negatively on the peace and quiet that visitors seek when they come to the island, as well as on the quality of life of nearby residents.” Read more at Uphilldowndale.
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Posted in Uncategorized, tagged chef, community supported, consumer, cooperative, csa, direct to consumer, fish, fisherman, fishery, fishing, fishing fleet, fresh fish, galilee, pew charitable trust, pew environment group, Point Judith, restaurant, rhode island, trace and trust, two rivers on August 17, 2011 |
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I had heard about community-supported-agriculture-type efforts that deliver fish directly to consumers in the Greater Boston area. Very fresh. What I did not know is that this sort of initiative is taking place on a wider scale.
My husband recently pointed out a NY Times story on how professional Rhode Island fishermen have made it easy for chefs to buy directly from the daily catch. And according to the Times, the chefs are ecstatic.
“This boat-to-table initiative is part of Trace and Trust, a program that [Point Judith-based fisherman Steve] Arnold; Christopher Brown, the head of the Rhode Island Commercial Fishermen’s Association; and Bob Westcott, another local fisherman, started this year to make fishing more lucrative and shopping more reliable. …
“Trace and Trust comes at a moment when the seafood industry is under attack because of misleading labeling as well as the freshness and sustainability of what it sells. Consumers and fishermen have reacted by setting up community-supported fisheries, in which consumers pay in advance for a weekly delivery of seafood. And fishermen have reached out to chefs before. But Trace and Trust has used technology to create a more direct and responsive connection between consumers and fishermen than any other program in the country, said Peter Baker, director of Northeast Fisheries Program for the Pew Environment Group.”
Read more here. See also the Pew Environment Group’s focus on Conserving New England Fish.
Because of the field I’m in, I do have to spare a thought for the fish-processing jobs that may be lost with more of this direct marketing, but there is no doubt that for the fisherman, the consumer, and the restaurant, fresh is best.
Here’s a picture I took of the Point Judith (RI) fishing fleet at rest.
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We drove back home from Rhode Island yesterday after three lovely days. The weather had been remarkably warm for a Memorial Day weekend, but very misty early. Every morning that I took my walk, I returned with soaking wet shoes.
On the drive home there was nothing much on the radio, so I read a children’s book aloud. The book had been recommended by Asakiyume because she knows I like children’s books, especially the ones she writes. The book I read on the drive home was Where the Mountain Meets the Moon, by Grace Lin, and I haven’t finished it.
So don’t tell me what happens.
These Rhode Island photos show a path to the beach, a small shop on the main street, and fishing boats in the harbor. Comments may be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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