So, since my blog is still small, I’m pretty sure you don’t have the feel yet for what kind of person I am. For starters, I’m hard-headed about things. My wife, the voice of reason and sanity, often tells me I don’t have the sense I was born with. Nor do I possess a filter between my brain and mouth. That will be the subject of another blog.
This blog is dedicated to the manly sport of fishing. For years in New York, we would both venture to the piers during the summer to fish. Fishing, for those that don’t do it, is not so much about catching fish as it is spending the day together relaxing, talking and enjoying each others company. Yesterday, my views on fishing changed.
Having relocated to the Miami area, I was anxious to get out in a boat and get after the big fish. My wife’s cousin has such a boat and at 5AM, we were heading for Pelican Bay. Now I have been on boats many times when I was younger. Hell, we sailed from Philadelphia to Puerto Rico was I was a kid. But my wife, the voice of reason and sanity, reminded me a few times that I got sick on Merry-Go-Rounds now. An insult to my manhood! I disregarded reason and sanity and went anyway.
We loaded in Pelican bay and set out. It was still semi-dark and the Miami skyline was beautiful. As we made our way around the channel to leave the bay, I was confidant. I took my place at the bow and struck my best Captain Morgan pose. Hands firmly on my hips and my foot on the low seat in front of me. I was dashing to say the least.
Then we hit the ocean and that was when it began. We found a likely spot and dropped anchor. I baited my hook and cast, confidant that I was going home with bragging rights and the biggest fish. In less than three minutes, I had a feeling in my stomach that I hadn’t felt for at least 15 years earlier. My head started sweating and my mouth was watering like a dog in a hot car. Inside, my stomach was trying to turn inside out and seconds later, the first feeding of the fish began.
My legs got too weak to hold me and I plopped to a chair behind me like a sack of dirty laundry. But that was just the start. Over the next few hours, I emptied an already empty stomach at least five more times. I finally curled up under the driver’s seat like a beaten dog and fell asleep. A few hours later, a wave splashed over me and my first thought was “Are we sinking?” The second thought was “Fuck it if we are…death is better.”
There may be pictures of me, passed out and green, hugging the cold water bottle for dear life. I know phone calls were made and the others looked at me sympathetically before pronouncing me unfit for duty. My wife is Cuban, descendants of a long line of fishing men. She looked at me with no pity when I got home.
“Well, you made yourself look bad” she said.
“I don’t care” I answered. “I’m back on land and that’s all that matters.”
“You’ll never get invited back again you know” she added, as if I would ever get on another boat again. “My Uncle said you looked pitiful.”
“Let me explain something” I countered. “My people didn’t come here in hollowed-out washing machines and rubber rafts. We got right on the big boats and came like we were invited.”
Then the voice of reason and sanity smirked. She had me and she knew it and my last line had been one of desperation and hopelessness. She proved her point and I had no choice but to agree. I have been many things in my life, and apparently a sailor was not one of them. You’ll have to excuse me now, I need to drink more ginger ale.