What are those white round spots on the dark rocks? They shimmer and shine in the sunlight just below the waterline. I paddle a bit closer. Are they oysters? Or, what’s left of them? The pearly inside of the shell is left and stuck on the rock.

Hmmm, if there are remnants of oysters, there should be edible ones around, shouldn’t there? Must keep my eye out for them. I love a good oyster. And it seems I’m not the only one. All ‘stuck-on-the-rock’ oysters are empty. Eaten by people or animals, I can’t tell which. But the remaining shell edges are razor sharp as Alexander demonstrates while exiting the boat. Bleeding like mad after accidentally touching one.

When we paddle between two island’s and the water becomes shallow, we see loads of oyster shells littering the sandy bottom. There must be some good ones among the open ones. Oh yes, I found one!!!

Actually, how are we going to open the damn thing? That is a question I didn’t think of. Of course I left my oyster-opening-thingy at home. That is not something I pack for every holiday. I never thought of finding oysters in Sweden.

Anyway, what could be a solution? I’m sure we have something useful to open oysters in our kayak. The more practical thinker is Alexander. He thought I could have a try with the skeg-pen. This self-invented stainless steel tool we use to wiggle small stones out of the skeg to keep the thing in working condition. It could act as an oyster-opener.

Ok, got the oyster, got the tool. Now, where do I start? What is the weak spot in this beautiful created shell? There is a white landscape of ridges and valleys on the surface, straight and curved-lines with sharp edges. Did the creature inside make this little house? How does it grow the shell? Will there be a pearl inside? I can’t help admiring the shell, it’s so beautiful.

There is a flat side and a rounder shape, like a lid on a box. Will the divide be there? Nicely hidden between the brittle pleats of the surface. Only way to find out is to put THE TOOL there and give it a whack.

It doesn’t work in my hands. I wiggle it between the ridges of the shell. Do a bit of ruining the carefully made structure but the box won’t budge. Beasty made its house very sturdy!! There is only one thing I can do…..

      ‘Alex, I can’t open the oyster!!’

Of course Alex comes to the rescue. He takes wacking the oyster to a whole different level. A more primitive one. He just smacks it on the rocks. The salty water of the oyster starts to drip out. Alex puts the tool in the hole and opens the oyster. But the creature resists by flexing its muscles. Oh boy, it’s a biggy. I ran to my kayak and got the lemon out. Lemon and oyster, that is a good combination, right? How do you share one oyster? 

Well, we used a knife to carefully cut it in two. Put a squeeze of lemon on and then a calculated gulp. That was a nice teensy weensy appetiser!

Charlotte Gannet

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