Poor CE. Barely recovered from his bridge trauma, he was assaulted anew: by the wily Atlantic Blue Crab.
Crabs and the watermen who catch them are a big part of Chesapeake Bay life, commerce and history. There’s even a Pulitzer-prize winning book on the subject entitled Beautiful Swimmers by William W. Warner. I haven’t read it yet because I just finished James Michener’s tome, Chesapeake, an 865-page love letter to the Eastern Shore and a thorough, if somewhat romanticized, account of the area’s history.
Michener devotes a lyrical chapter of his book to a description of the environs and mating cycle of the Chesapeake crab. And since we visited the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum next to our hotel, we learned more about this staple of the Eastern Bay economy.
We had worked up quite an appetite after all this crab viewing, so we walked over to a restaurant at the nearby harbor for lunch. The special of the day was a crab sandwich, and the CE envisioned a hearty helping of succulent crab meat in his near future. But he hadn’t envisioned it quite the way it was served:
Mr. or Ms. crab arrived in his or her entirety, complete with claws intact, peeking out from two rather plain slices of bread. The CE was not too happy, although I have to imagine that the crab, battered up and presumably deep-fried, was even less pleased about the situation.
As it turned out, this poor crab gave its life in vain, because it was summarily dispatched back to the kitchen. The CE has never been so happy to order a cheeseburger as he was that day…