Tuesday, April 19, 2022

In Pursuit of Moeche (Soft Shell Crabs) at the Arsenale

27 April 2014: With just a length of twine tied around a rock (to weight it down into the water) these fishermen were more dependent upon the misbegotten curiosity of overly-grabby crabs than the bits of fried calamari or french fries with which they tried to allure them. There weren't a lot of crustaceans who went for the bait (when it didn't simply come untethered), but just enough to keep the kids enthralled for hours, with even near misses (crabs clearly visible beneath the surface who never quite clamped onto the string, some who had the good sense to let go as soon as they were hauled into the air) eliciting thrilled exclamations. "Che gigante!" they'd yelp about one particular crab about the size of their own palms--but of course it's all relative. At such times I could imagine no better place in the world to be a kid than Venice.

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