Monday, June 25, 2012

The South, Spain, and The Fish Crisis

One week down in Perpignan, and though I've spent a good deal of time on the couch, in bed, and in the reading chair while TMI works in the vineyard, the time here has also been embellished lightly with some perfect Southern France and Spain exploration

Last Tuesday I went with TMI's mom to work and had a day to myself wondering the walled medieval city of Carcassonne. It felt a bit like Disney Land with the streets all stuffed and colored with flamboyant summer shirts and hairstyles of plump aging tourists, but the novelty of the scene was worth it.

Thursday TMI's mom took me yet again on an adventure and we crossed the border into Spain and spent the late afternoon in Gerona. Loved it. We sat under flowery trellises and sipped melty melon flavored shave ice-like drinks.I think we were supposed to be female bonding, which I tried sooo hard to do, but the language barrier is still fighting our having a comfortable relationship like a feral cat on a leash. 

The weekend the whole family went back down to Spain, this time to a town called Figueres, where TMI and I explored the Dali museum. We kept very close to one another and I adored exploring the inside of all those slides I'd seen while studying art history in college.

In other words I've been managing alright in the occasionally awkward 2 weeks in Perpignan with TMI's parents situation. But, just to complain about something, we have been eating A LOT OF MEAT. As in, every day, every meal. Before moving to France I'd been vegetarian for several years, namely because I couldn't handle the violence of eating something that once walked and talked- picking bones and avoiding fat has always made me squeamish, but also because I'm a strong animal rights advocate. I'd been handling the meat eating well enough, but last night,(and I know you guys are gonna barf at my wimp out factor here) we had fish, the kind where it's the whole fish, gaping mouth, steamed eyes and all, on the plate.

I picked around the bones and tried my best not to look at the face.. the little teeth, the white eyes, etc, and I was trying to work my way around the vein covered spine, when I pulled at it and a slimy red fish brain slipped out of the head. That was it. Trying not to attract any attention, I tried to pile the fish in a way that looked like I'd eaten it and left the table the first chance I got. It was a big reminder that for a year I'd been doing something I didn't feel good about; but also that I'm ashamed of not wanting to eat meat and afraid that TMI won't be able to understand.

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