This was the summer of lobsters for us (or as Iranians pronounce it: lobEsters): I`m sure we ate more of these ferocious-looking crabs with their huge claws stretched out in front of them during this one summer than the average Haligonian does in a year. Lobsters are not cheap, and they are not full of meat, but what there is is sweet, different and delicious, and for us, reared on hormony chickens and veal, it has a wild, extravagant taste.
There are tanks of live lobsters in the supermarkets, and for an extra couple of bucks (see- I am learning to talk like them), the fish person will cook it for you. Since the lobsters are cooked by being put alive in boiling water, persons of delicate sensibilities such as myself prefer to have them cooked by somebody else- even though the internet assures us that the lobsters feel no pain at being boiled alive because of their different nervous system. How do they know? How do they know the lobsters feel pain or not?
Nevertheless, wanting to play the part of real Haligonians, we went out to a fishermen’s market one sunny August day (suffice it to say it was much, much cleaner than the filthy fish markets in Amol and Bandar Abbas. It was so clean that it DIDN’t smell of fish. Can you imagine that? A fish market which doesn’t smell of fish?!!!), and bought three live, green-black speckled lobsters. And then we bought a huge, tall lobster pot for boiling them in. Then, we rushed home… and fatal mistake, turned on the bathwater… and dumped the lobsters in the bathtub, wishing to prolong their life to the very edge of the pot. The golden boy was absolutely hysterical with excitement at that point, and the two adults weren`t far off.
The water in the lobster pot took ages to boil, and I googled `live lobsters` to pass the time. And with a sense of horror I read that lobsters expire in fresh water. Screaming, I rushed to the bathroom… It was too late. Three lifeless lobsters were floating in the tub.
Undaunted, we boiled the expired lobsters anyway, and feasted on the sweet white meat pulled out of their cracked scarlet shells, flavoured only with lots of melted salty butter. But the lobsters had their revenge. I couldn`t move more than ten paces away from the toilet for the next two days…