Our little cat, Bandit, unfortunately is epileptic and has to take medication during her lifetime to decrease the seizures. This makes us sad, but what a busy, happy, curious cat we have most of the time. Medication low, we sought a veterinarian in our part of the city, Waiblingen, hoping that there wouldn’t be any hassles, language/diagnosis, in getting the same kind of medication we had for Bandit in France. No problem. We found a youngish, pleasant, English familiar, German veterinarian close to our house who was somewhat an expert in epileptic animals. Bizarre, before we got Bandit, we didn’t realize that animal epilepsy existed! Anyway.
On the way to the Vet, my husband and I were discussing rabies vaccinations. I contended that in Europe, they were unnecessary because rabies has been eradicated on the continent. Non! He averred. We asked the Vet and of course I was right :) He said that there was no rabies in Europe except for the noncontagious kind found in “mice flying”. After choking down spontaneous, ugly American laughter, we asked if he meant bats. Yes. After that, we were all allowed to laugh hysterically for 5 minutes or so with him not at him, triumphing once again, over immature senility.
Finally recovered from the debilitating Stuttgart flu, I decided that I needed a food shopping day in town, in a French town, in France. This worked out well because our daughter had a penitential, kneeling, bowing and scraping convent sleepover on Friday in the Alsatian town of Mariental and needed to be picked up at 5:00 p.m. on Saturday. Well, okay! I checked out the Saturday farmer’s markets in the area and found one not far from Mariental in the town of Bischwiller. We left Stuttgart at 7:30 a.m. in order to get the best produce.
I think that Bischwiller must have had a bad war or something from which they have never recovered. The invading armies must have salted the earth because I have never seen such a sickly, distorted selection of market vegetables in France before! Bleah! I could have wept, I was so disappointed. I bought nothing. We stopped in town for a coffee but I think we were too close to the border :(
On the way out of town, I saw a supermarket called Super U and remembered seeing this chain in the Vendee region of France when I took my photography class with Roger Stowell http://camerahols.com. Rather then leave empty handed, we stopped at the Super U and I’m glad we did. They had everything!
The fish counter fish looked as if they had just been pulled from the ocean! I bought a boatload, including a large perch fillet for deep frying.
Rabbit, duck, poussin, beef, veal, veg and fruits! I bought them all. At one point I was giddily commenting on the color of the veal to my husband and, looking up, realized I was talking to a strange man. “I thought you were my husband,” I babbled in English, “but you’re not”, I giggled. Poor man, he sort of edged away :) I had a wonderful time!
After a fortifying lunch with corked wine, we visited a number of Alsatian pottery shops. The colors and style of this pottery is not really to my taste but I did find some more porcelain animals including two little frogs, in case of a garlicky plate of frogs’ legs.
Cajun Fried Perch
1 large ocean perch fillet, cut into serving pieces
Emeril’s essence or other Cajun/Creole seasoning
Season the perch with the essence and set aside for about 30 minutes. Brush both sides of the perch with mustard, dust with the flour, then deep fry in the peanut oil until golden.