Tuesday, February 2, 2010


There's been a death in the family, so I'm back home on Maryland's lovely Eastern Shore. I used to hate this place growing up and left when I was 16 to go away to school. I visited after that, but never really came home. Despite the years and the travels that have taken me across the country, it's weird how you never really can leave home. (Or maybe home never leaves you?) And almost 14 years after I first left, I realize that I sorta like this like place. Actually, I sorta love it.

It's weird and quirky and sometimes backwards, but it's teeming with its own unique heritage (Two words: Oyster Wars!) It's a weird town: similar to a small suburb, it's the only city in the area. And outside of resort spots that balloon on summer weekends, with 28,000 residents, it's the only game in town.

It's changed since I left. There's a Starbucks now. And more big box stores. And houses along the coast are being sold at Sotheby's for more money than I'll ever make in a decade.

But its rural roots are everywhere. Which leads me to this.

For the curious:
a) Muskrat on the menu is a seasonal fare. You'll only find it in the winter months.
b) I just stopped to take a picture. Not take a bite
c) But I hear it's tasty.
d) Don't believe me? Here's a list of muskrat recipes.
e) My favorite, in name only, has to be either smothered muskrat (with onions) or muskrat casserole.
f) $10 says this post is NOT going in the direction you expected.
g) For the record, during other parts of the year, I'm fairly certain some places serve nutria.
h) Which, P.S., are super cute little invasive species.

Addendum: My friend Doug says I should have called this post Muskrat Love. He's probably right. Well, crap.


Kelly said...

I hear you. It's definitely a weird place, but it's my hometown.

(Dayton's, the only restaurant where my mom and her friends eat breakfast and where they are probably still the youngest people in there on any given visit.)

For my money, though? Market Street, with its peach pie martinis and seafood skins is my must-visit place.

Barbara said...

I was telling tales of muskrat stew just the other day.

Lido Vizzutti said...

Made my day Ms. N.

Kathleen said...

Well, that answers that.

KateKwiltz said...

Thanks, but I'll pass.
Sorry about the funeral, those are never welcome.
Safe travels!