When steamed crabs are put out on the table, there is not only the aroma of Old Bay in the air, but excitement also fills the air. People start to gather, sitting down and diving into the pile of crabs.
But eating crabs is not like eating a steak or other chunks of cow, pig, or chicken. It’s not like eating most other meals. To eat steamed crabs, you have to get to the crab meat. And the crab does not surrender its meat without a struggle. It takes;
Tools – knife and wooden mallet.
Technique – how to open the crab, where to pull and crack.
Touch – while you have to use your eyes, there’s a lot of touching and feeling involved.
Time – you don’t fill up on crab in 5 minutes, it’s a process, it’s an event.
You can’t just jam the crab into your mouth, you have to take the crab apart so that you can get to the meat. And when you’ve finally gotten to the meat, you don’t eat it by shoveling it in. It starts by pulling a little bit of meat out and putting it into your mouth. You then return to the crab, find some more meat, get it out and put that small bite in your mouth. Move too quickly or without being careful and you’ll get a piece of the shell stuck between your teeth. Or worse.
To eat a steamed crab, you take lots and lots of small portions. Again and again, you take out these small bites of meat and put them in your mouth. Then you enjoy the incredible flavor and texture of the crab. Yes, there are those rare moments when a big chunk of backfin meat comes out in one piece. And you savor those unique times. But it’s mostly lots of small bites.
I’ve been to lots of places around this world, eaten lots of usual and very unusual food. And for my money, there is nothing, nothing, nothing quite like steamed crabs.
Hope is the same way. You can’t gorge on hope. It comes slowly, one small bite at a time. One bite, followed by another, by another, by another. There are those very rare times when hope comes in like a flood, so enjoy it if/when it happens. But most of life is lived one bite of hope at a time.
Tomorrow – there is yet a third way that hope is just like steamed crabs.