This Old Man and The Sea

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I seriously suck at fishing. It’s a darn good job we have two freezers on Cream Puff full of meat. If it were up to me to provide fresh fish, we’d die. We do have some fish aboard. Cindy knows too well about my inability to pull fish from the ocean. She bought fish at Costco before we left the USA and plans to buy more fish while in the Bahamas.

I have always sucked at fishing. As a youngster, I would grab my pole and head out to the pond or river. I never caught anything. Well, that’s a bit of a fishing tale. I did catch a small fish once. I wanted to keep it but the fisherman that helped me get it off the hook said it was too small. He made me throw it back and told me to catch it again in a couple of years. Even as a young and naïve boy, I knew I would never catch that fish again.

Fishing to me became a way of getting out of the house. Parents seldom asked much when they saw me walk off with my pole and tackle box. They assumed I was not headed for trouble and I guess for parents that’s half the battle won. If only they knew.

I found fishing usually takes place near the water. I like being near the water. I can sit for hours looking at a river flow or sit on the end of a dock daggling my feet in the water with a pole in hand. I think the term “fishing” to me became synonymous with hanging out at the water’s edge just taking in the view. I can tell you about many places to sit that have beautiful views but alas, no fish.

Ask Cindy and she will tell you a story about when we were dating and we went fishing together. The plan was to go and catch a nice big bass and cook it on a camp fire. We drove to a river where I had been told fish lived. She watched me take my faithful lawn chair, tackle box and pole from the trunk of my old beaten up Ford LTD that sported multiple shades of blue paint. We walked down to what soon became a favorite spot of mine on the river’s edge. I set up the chair under the shade of a great oak tree, put the tackle box at my side and tied on a lure. I am told bass like lures. It also stated that on the package. Cindy wanted to go swimming but, out of respect for my desire to catch a fish she hung with me on the shore. Little did she know then that swimming or not swimming would have had no impact at all on the fish tally for that day. She watched in amazement as I cast my lure over and over into the branches of the great oak tree. I would gently tug it. Sometimes it came loose. Other times it required a replacement from the tackle box.  After repeating this seventeen or eighteen times, I might have cussed. “Why don’t you move away from the tree” Cindy asked. I replied, “I like this spot. It’s nice here”. We stopped for a burger on the way back. She married my anyway.

Over the years, I misplaced my old fishing pole and tackle box. The old lawn chair fell apart. I keep reading about people who live on boats and catch fish all the time. I decided to give fishing another try. You are probably reading this thinking I am going to show you a picture of a recently caught record breaking fish. I can assure you, this hasn’t happen yet. Sucking at something hasn’t dampened my willingness to keep trying.

I read when you sail across the gulfstream to drag a green lure behind the boat. This is said to be a surefire way of catching a Mahi-Mahi. I thought it would be best if I didn’t drag the lure. On the off-chance that I caught a monster Mahi-Mahi, we have no place to put it. Our freezers are full of Costco fish.

When we are at marinas, I see big sport fishing boats. These are big boats designed with the sole purpose of getting big game fish out of the ocean for sport. The boat owners are people who have millions of dollars tied up in fishing. They are outfitted with tons of poles, gold plated reels and outriggers. I have yet to understand the use of outriggers. I figured these are the folks that must really understand how to fish. I mean, why on earth would they spend all that money if they never caught anything? So in my eagerness to become a better fisherman, I stop them on the dock and begin to ask them a lot of questions about how to catch fish. They all seem to have their own special way. They tell me about down-riggers and fancy shiny lures. They tell me about special baits and chumming. They give me a list of very expensive stuff to buy that will ensure I catch big game fish. I ask them if they know Costco sells fish.

Categories: Bahamas, Funny Stuff

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