Right, oranges used to be one of the gifts I would
find in my stocking on Christmas morning. Seasonal.
They were a real treat. Now you can buy them all
year long. Is that a bad thing? Most likely not but
it does take the specialness from them. Today they
are just oranges. No longer only available once a
Fall was the time for game. No, not football, real game.
Things you shot. Our family was not into the deer hunting
angle but small game, ducks, rabbits and pheasants were
on the menu often. Including wild mushrooms when we got
lucky. I loved the various ways mom could cook, especially
ducks and pheasant. It was a real treat not just food for
a meal. They were a seasonal delight, only possible at that
season. I think the various foods available was one of the
things that made seasons seem so outstanding. Each season
had its rewards, usually in some form of food that was now
destined for our table.
In my early years I would bring home a few trout and
in the summers some walleye and bluegills from the
lake where we stayed. Again,seasonal. We caught them
in the summer and ate them in the summer.
Later on we moved to Montana and with an old stone
homestead had two freezers in the dirt floored basement.
Trust me, we used them well. We used them because the
food we got often came in larger packages; beef, deer,
moose and elk for instance. Toss in a generous bag limit
of birds and we kept them going.
But I had learned many years earlier that fish frozen
for very long just doesn't make it. The delicate taste
gets frozen out of them. So, any fish we took home we
ate within a day or so. There was a private stocked lake
near us where we had permission to take any we wanted for
food whenever. Cutthroat trout. You bet, a bit of butter
and herb and you have a wonderful meal.
Sometimes a fish from the other rivers of the area
would make it home, but not often actually. We both
liked fly fishing but trying to drag a dead fish
around for any length of time became a nuisance. So,
before it was fashionable, we tossed most everything back.
Every so often I read where someone will not take any
fish for themselves but will bring home a limit for
some folks in their neighborhood. Some times kind of
poor folks, or just maybe not able to get out any more,
or just like the taste of fish. We each have our own way
of doing things in that respect and I have mine. You may
not agree and I'm not asking you to. Just putting it out
as to where I stand on some things.
I don't do that, but have had it done for me. I have
had a couple of times a fish given to me and enjoyed
it greatly. I was also honored that they would do such
a thing. But I can not reciprocate. I try hard to eat
foods yet that are in season so to speak, but as I
stated above, it's pretty hard to figure the seasons
anymore. For some reason I just don't think it's right
for me to take game to another person. The regulation
of our rejoices is gauged on a number of things,
involvement being only one of many considered. Is this
being stingy on my part, hoggish; maybe.
There seems to be several elusive thoughts running
in my mind as I write this, but if I write any of
them you will likely be even more insulted than you
are now. Somewhere I hope there is at least one of
you who feels our game and resources are too special
and valuable and yes, seasonal, to be only taken for
others, and not fully appreciated by those who are
able or willing to invest the time, expense and
I'm pretty sure I have offended those of you who kill
game for others. That was not my purpose. When there
is a surplus of any kind of game I think it is a fine
thing to help others in any way possible and even if
it is just as a treat for the taste-buds for them. My
thoughts were from areas of well managed resources where
bag limits, size limits, slot limits, C and R and all
other sorts of environmental stewardship controls were
in place. ~ James Castwell