Sunday, January 24, 2010


In the post below,  there was some mention of enjoying smoked salmon as an appetizer. Today, on an excursion to Shediac,  I was delighted to find another kind of fishy business going on.  Ice-fishing!  I am completely bemused and befuddled by this undertaking.  If I ever espy little colonies of brightly coloured ice fishing shacks gathered out on the frozen waters I am beside myself with delight.  I can hardly think of anything nuttier to do than to haul a small shed out into the middle of a frozen body of water, install a woodstove of sorts, cut a hole in the ice, put a hook on a line and drop it through the hole, then sit in the dark and the cold (in spite of the stove) and wait for some fish to be as curious as me about the whole enterprise.  I understand that there is some considerable consumption of alcohol involved, purely to keep warm. of course!  It's not really the acohol that warms, but the repeated lifting of the bottle to the lips.

If you look closely, you'll see two bucket sized lumps of ice to the left of the picture.  These would be likely have something to do with the making of the holes in the ice.  Leaning on the other side of the wee hut are the sliders that this ingenious fisherman would have used to drag the thing out onto the ice.  I wish I would have seen that.  He was apparently inside, because there was smoke coming from the chimney.

Now, I have never been ice-fishing, although I was once invited. But Pierre has been, so that's where I got my information.  In fact, another time he actually filmed two musicians "enjoying" the experience of ice-fishing.  One of them happened to be a singer from Haiti, who hardly even knew what winter or snow was before being invited to New Brunswick to be teamed up with another singer for a documentary.  Imagine this rotund, albino Haitian gentleman cozied up to a tiny, blonde Acadian woman, both swaddled in layers of winter clothing and blankets, singing songs to the fish supposedly swimming beneath their feet.  It was utterly charming. 

I can only hope that if our Haitian friend is in his homeland, that he is somewhere safe, still cherishing his memories of frozen lands and happier times.

There was a very impressive, heartfelt concert put on by many well-known musicians the other night to raise money to help Haiti find its feet.  A recording of the concert is available from iTunes.

Apple, the labels, and the artists are donating their share of the proceeds from the sale of the album Hope for Haiti Now and any of its individual live performance tracks to the Clinton Bush Haiti Fund, Oxfam America, Partners In Health, Red Cross, UNICEF, United Nations World Food Programme, and Yéle Haiti Foundation. Apple, the labels, and the artists are donating their share of the proceeds from the the sale of the individual studio track, "Stranded (Haiti Mon Amour) - Version 1.0," featuring Jay-Z, Bono, The Edge, and Rihanna, to Partners In Health.  


  1. Purchased it yesterday and am listening to it in my office as I read your post.

    I went ice fishing once. It was a blind date. Enough said.

  2. Not sure how much I'd like to be out there on the ice in a hut with a stove generating heat... I wonder how many of them end up melting their way through the ice, to become feed for the very fish they hope to dine on... ?

    No, surely it's safe enough, but still... Well, maybe if Saj was there to keep mixing up new and exciting cocktails ? To stay warm with ?

    Like how you tied this in to relief efforts for Haiti... so much still to be done there...

    PS WV is "eupting", which is truly a totally meaningless word if there ever was one...

  3. Driftwood: Am still configuring configurations for MP3 player and iTunes so haven't actually got the music yet. I was really impressed with the unusual combo of Sheryl Crow, Keith Urban, and Kid Rock! At least, that's who I think they were.
    Keep on rockin' in the free world!

  4. BrOwen,
    I've consulted the expert on your behalf and have been informed that as heat goes up, and as the stove is put on some sort of support, it is a very rare occurence that the whole shebang actually melts right through the ice. Reassuring, no? Still won't get me inside one, no matter what the Saj is serving up! You go ahead, though, and I'll wait for you both back at the lodge, enjoying a Hot Toddy by the fireplace.

    As for your WV, "eupting"' I believe it's the term used to describe how New Englanders say "yup" (ie. "eup"). When they agree with something they are "eupting".


    Blind date???!!! Ice-fishing??? That's not how you met Jim was it?!

  6. How alluring to see, even though i do know nothing about fishing.
    A bit under emotions it would indeed be a joy to sit upon that ice and getting warm by lifting what is beneath.
    Please have a wonderful Tuesday.

  7. Wow, Robert. You seem to speak in parables. Even though expressed in simple language, the thoughts are layered with meaning! Much like the thick layers of ice needed to make a strong enough surface to walk on.
    Fishing-lures-alluring--excellent pun!
    Lifting what is solitude, getting out of the frozen atmosphere, warming one's self with one's truth. Robert, The Philospher Fisher.

  8. Yes, it was Sheryl Crow, Keith Urban, and Kid Rock - a great combination. I once saw Sheryl Crow and Kid Rock singing a duet but don't remember where. You could likely find it on You Tube.

    And no that isn't how I met Jim.

  9. Drifty,
    You are a wealth of unexpected information!

  10. That does actually look like fun! However, I probably wouldn't be brave enough to give it a go - much easier to stroll down to the chipshop and ask them for fish I reckon!

  11. Well, that's one way to cool one's heels, so to speak.

  12. Saj,
    I'm with you! Fish'n'chips and a nice cold beer. I liken the ice fishing experience to sitting in an outhouse in the middle of a cold winter night. Not that I've ever done either. And that's how I'd like to keep it.

  13. Shirl,
    Yes, cool one's heels and most of the rest of one's body parts!

  14. Speaking of cooling one's body parts, maybe they're actually working on some sort of suspended animation project out there ?

    Not for me, talk about cabin fever !

    WV is "BALOYIPT", which is what they yell when they go crashing through the ice !