Forget everything what Mr. Knigge has taught. Take the eel into the hands. Don’t be afraid, as this is a local tradition. Everyone else does the same, and the waiters are surely willing to assist and help.
This is how it’s done: The eel can be skinned from head to tail. Firstly, the ventral and dorsal fins are removed. A more succulent eel is skinned form tail to head. If the eel is more tender, the head is snapped backwards and removed with the skin.