National Geographic : 1968 Apr
EKTACHROME (LOWERLEFT)AND KODACHROMES BYJAMESH. PICKERELL,BLACKSTAR later I saw him in another dory gaffing floating fish. Other men recovered his boat. Joaquim pitched the last cod aboard. His catch weighed almost half a ton-a third of that when cleaned, salted, and dried. He had earned about $12. Despite three wage increases since 1959, the fishermen cannot often afford, when at home, to eat the fish they catch. A staple until recently, dried, salted cod is now almost a luxury. It sells for the equivalent of 50 cents or more a pound in Portugal. The Jose Alberto's provisions included plenty of dried, salted fish from the previous year's catch-a concession to the men, who prefer it to fresh-caught cod. Joaquim received additional pay for help ing clean and salt the fish. One needs skill to bone a cod quickly and without waste. After supper I watched the fishermen work assem bly-line fashion (following pages). They deftly severed the heads, cut out the backbones, tongues, and cheeks, then laid open the fish and removed the viscera. Livers were saved to be rendered into cod-liver oil. In the old days cod cleaners sang as they worked. Now phonograph records supply the music. Unchanged, however, is the traditional ration of warm brandy. A captain I met, a non-drinker, once forgot the brandy. His crew never said a word. When 581 N.G.S.