Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Grimsby sur la Mer

Oh dear, one of the uncalled for perils of blogging is that it's a telling reminder of how varied and interesting your life is. Or not. Can it really be that the most blogworthy happening in a whole month was last week's visit to (the aptly named) Grimsby?

Yes, but there's a reason for going. Fish, of course. Wholesalers on the docks there will retail you the stuff for a tiny fraction of what you'd pay in a shop - even assuming that you could find one and fishmongers weren't almost extinct. So we take a couple of cool-boxes and stock up with all the stuff that's normally only available in French supermarkets even though it's landed in the UK... crab, langoustines, coquilles St. Jacques.. mackerel, sardines, sole... Luvverly. I'm having a craze on cooking with fresh ginger at the mo. and seafood is just sensational with it.

A Visitors Guide.

Whilst there, it's a good idea to mingle with the friendly fisherfolk and take in the quaint architectural gems of this unspoilt harbour town.

Those other famous mariners, the Venetians, were obviously influenced by Grimsby when designing their (much smaller) Campanile in St. Marks Square.

And afterwards, what better way to end the day than to join the throngs for a stroll along the promenade at chic Cleethorpes, nestling next-door along the picturesque Humber coastline.

What is it with this bloody country. If Grimsby was in France, it would be Marseilles and you'd sit in a quayside bar slurping bouillabaisse, with warm crusty bread and a pastis. If Grimsby was Spanish, it would be Pontevedra and they'd bring you calamares and the delicious little percebes, that taste of the sea itself and which the locals defy death to harvest from the wave-lashed rocks. Even if Grimsby was Belgian for gods sake, it would be Ostende and you could get a bowl of mussels and chips with your choice of beer. But Grimsby is British. So oh no, not so much as the chance to sample the fresh-caught herring it's supposedly famed for. It's also famous for being the Home of the Fish Finger, though, a mainstay of local cuisine. Plenty of them on the menus.

PS Ann Keen MP.

Had quite a few hits, lately, looking for info on this old bird. Probably due to both her and her husband each claiming an Additional Costs Allowance towards their pied a terre in Central London - despite living only a few miles away from the Commons in Brentford. Between them, they pull in about £40K a year in extra expenses for its upkeep. Not bad. No wonder they're on the Speaker's little list of those he's trying to keep quiet about. Ho hum. We're under the thumbs of a political class, nowadays, whose idea it is that they rule over us. Snouts. Troughs.


Glamourpuss said...

I've never been to Grimsby, but there's something in what you say - we've lost all pride in ourselves as a nation.


All Shook Up said...

Grimsby is most definitely not your scene, Puss. You can continue giving it a miss with a clear conscience.

Calamity Jane said...

Ah, Grimsby. Almost as charming as the equally suitably named Goole.

All Shook Up said...

Yes Jane.. hometown of the Goolies. Close by lies Scunthorpe.. supply your own joke.