In the south, families get together for a tradition called a “fish fry.” Maybe these happen all over the country, however, the ones that I’ve been to have been in the south.
Uncles gather around big metal fryers, dropping the delicacies that they caught on some family property or local fishing holes.
They hold their SEC emblazoned Tervis tumblers (or $40.00 Yetis) full of their preferred alcoholic concoction and sip them slowly (in some cases quickly), while they prepare food for a whole slew of relatives that they may or may not remember.
Aunts and grandparents bring side dishes, like cold macaroni salad, warm mac n’ cheese, congealed salads, potato salads… you get the idea, there are lots of salads.
If you are lucky, you may get hushpuppies and fries.
The desserts will cover an entire table of their own in all shades of pastels. Cookies, brownies and pies will tempt the strongest of no-carb eaters and gluten-free-ers.
Then, there is the karaoke. Sometimes, if you are lucky, as I have been, the town’s sheriff will show up for a night cap and his own version of “Freebird,” which everyone sings along to and applauds afterwards.
As the night progresses and the ladies drink more boxed wine, while the men (or the women who don’t drink wine) get up close and personal with Jim and Jack and the Captain, the fun ensues.
It’s an interesting dance of the generations as you watch to see who is in charge this year, who is really concerned about the family legacy, and who traveled the farthest to partake in the annual event… as friends that have been in attendance for more than one year, become family. Connections are made, relationships rekindled in the ceremony of something as simple as a backyard fish fry.
If you ever have an opportunity to attend one of these events. DO NOT MISS IT.
Tell us, what family traditions do you have that you hope your children will carry on after you?