Thursday, May 30, 2013

Learned young is done old.

You read in my previous post; fishing has been introduced into the family!!
Sven caught hus first fish, using nothing but an extendeble rod and a piece of bread as bait. Within minutes he caught his first one, causing a lot of excitement among the kids. Since the fish was not dead yet (he had nothing to hit the fish on the head with) he just took his knife and cut off the fish's head! Without blinking his eyes! Our neighbour told us that this species of fish are quite plentyfull, but they're not all that good for eating. So we decided that this fish should not go to waste and that Sven should learn how to clean them too.  Our fourlegged familymembers would then enjoy the fresh food, we figured. The fish went into a box with lid, into the fridge to be taken care off later.
Well, that didn't happen.
Sven was going on a schooltrip the next day with an overnighter and everyting still needed to get packed! We hadn't thought of that, so the fish remained in the fridge for 2 days.

A few days later, after Sven came back, he was just to tired from his schooltrip (and he had to take a day off. He was really beaten.) he went fishing again, his 2 sisters following in his wake, and again caused a lot of excitement. He managed to catch 3 fish within 10 minutes using the same method!! Are these fish stupid or is my bread that delicious???

I told hem to stop, since I believe we should not be taking more than we needed and we had enough for a fishcleaningclass and catlunch. I told my youngest duaghter to throw the leftover pieces of bread into the water and in no time more than a dozen fish appeared, even with us moving around on the pier and making noice.

Afterwards my wife showed Sven how to clean the fish and he cleaned the other 2 himself. That's part of fishing too. Seeing him handle a very slippery fish and a sharp knife simultaniously made me slightly nervous, though. And once again our youngest daughter stayed and watched......

And our cats were more than willing to take care of the fish!! This is so much better for them than that factorymade, supermarketjunk they usually eat..... when not catching mice, voles or birds....

The great thing about this all is that not only are the kids getting out and learn to study (parts of) nature and the world around them, they also learn the first steps of taking care for themselves. I was struck by the total absence of disgust with Sven, when he handled the fish, killed them and then cleaned them!
No eeewww, yukkk, groce or any similar reaction, usually seen by kids (at least where we come from) and I started wondering why.
That's when it came to me; we had NOT learned them to be disgusted! We had never told them it was dirty, filthy or unsanitary. Instead we told and showed them that things like this are normal. We learned them that we catch, kill and clean animals for food, skin and other uses. And that we need to do so with respect and gratitude for their offerings. How different have I been brought up!
These small lessons appearantly make a world of difference and will give them an advantage!!

Now all I need to do is learn how to hunt, kill, fielddress, skin and butcher an animal and to show our kids how to recognise and use the plants around them. A lot to learn for me, especially the hunting-killing-dressing-part.

And the fish in the box?? I now know why you should clean them right away instead of 4 days later. It wasn't exactly fresh and appetizingly looking and smelling....


  1. Two thumbs up.
    Now it's time you learned trout fishing;-)

    1. Tack!
      You mean it's time HE learns that. I'm not much into fishing....yet.

  2. Good stuff! Those fish look like "särki" (roach) to me. Finns have also told me that they don't have a lot of usable meat on them (just a small section on the top towards the tail). They do seem to love bread, as do small perch. :)

    Great to see you teaching the kids stuff like this, and that the drive is strong in you, too!

  3. Thanks Matt,
    like I said, I'm not much of a fisherman myself, but I might learn it too.