Behind the pictures: Barefoot in a fish pond (Egypt – 1980)


Barefoot in the mud (02) Barefoot in the mud (01) Barefoot in the mud (03)



Back to an earlier post in which I thanked Mr. Perdo Padlan, my first teacher in aquaculture. The inserted pictures were taken during the first 6-month training course led by Mr. Padlan, managed by myself and conducted on Zawya fish farm, Kafr El Sheikh, Egypt.

The black and white pictures show how we were barefoot in a fish pond. That was not easy to convince the trainees to step into the pond barefoot. Before that day, Mr. Padlan shared with me his views in regard to the practical training on organic fertilization emphasizing the importance of carrying it by the trainees themselves. I should admit I had during that time enough uncertainty about accepting that from trainees’ side as this was something new to them as well as to me. I recall reaching the pond where there were no pond workers and the task of the day was presented.  Mr. Padlan and I decided not to embarrass anyone any one. Instead, Mr. Padlan took off his shoes and so I did and we both stepped in the muddy bottom and in few minutes everyone joined and performed the training task. I remember how the reactions expressed by the trainees changed from surprise then cautiously accepting and then actively involved in this unique experience to everyone.  

Twenty or thirty years later or in other societies with different cultures, going into a fish pond is a common practice and does not need any post, but this was not the case in this case bearing in mind that aquaculture was just starting in Egypt and having in consideration the seniority of most of the course participants.



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