A Little Excitement at the End of the Day
25 April 2011 | Rock Sound, Eleuthera
It was squally as predicted today and we ended up staying aboard after taking Fuzzy for his morning walk. Bud napped for a while having not slept well the last three nights because of the music from the Home Coming festival. Then we both worked on trimming Fuzzy. We probably spent a total of three hours combing out tangles and clipping with the scissors and the trimmers. Altogether it was a pretty quiet day (although Fuzzy was a bit agitated).
After supper and Fuzzy’s evening stroll Bud went out to “feed the fish” as he put it. He wasn’t out there for long when he called me, he had a fish on the line, and it seemed like a good one. I took this photo before either of us saw the fish. Bud was using 6 pound test line on this little spinning rod and reel. He must have fought with it for 15 or 20 minutes. Since we still don’t have a fish net he took the fishing gloves and got down in the dinghy to land it. It was a beautiful mutton snapper, and a big one. Bud got it in to the dinghy without incident, but the excitement wasn’t over.
A Bahamian couple out on their jet ski saw Bud fighting the fish and came over to get a better look. Once the fish was landed they came right up to the dinghy to see it. The woman, Juliet, is a photographer and was leaning over to take a picture when her husband, Thompson, leaned over to get a closer look. Suddenly the jet ski rolled and Thompson and Juliet were both in the water. Juliet had on a life jacket and she grabbed the dinghy right away, which is a good thing, because she can’t swim. Bud managed to grab the cell phone she was using to take the picture, but not before it got wet. I pulled the dinghy over to the ladder and Juliet was able to climb out. She was miffed, but it was pretty funny, too, and she didn’t seem to stay too angry. Thompson climbed out while I went and got towels.
Juliet wrapped up in a towel and sat in the cockpit with me while Bud and Thompson took the dinghy (which still had the snapper in it) out to retrieve the upside down jet ski that was slowly drifting away. I was sure the two of them were going to flip the dinghy in their efforts to right the jet ski; but there were no more disasters and they got the jet ski upright. Surprisingly to me, it started right back up. Juliet was reluctant to get back on the thing, but she did. She told me it would be a long time before Thompson heard the end of it. “I told him he was drinking too much to go out on that thing,” she said. We had managed to save both their cell phones and Thompson’s sandals but one of Juliet’s had floated away. Bud was out looking for it in the dinghy. Thompson was a lot happier than Juliet when Bud came back, not with her sandal, but with what was left of the bottle of white wine they’d had with them. They told me if we rented a car as we were thinking of doing we had to stop by their photography studio tomorrow. I think they hope they can save the photos on the cell phone (it was still on, despite the water).
After they left, Bud still had to take care of the fish. He asked me for the mallet he used to tenderize the conch as he thought the fish was still alive. He went to hit the fish on the head, missed and hit the cutting board and the mallet bounced back and slipped out of his wet hands and overboard. So tomorrow Bud has to dive for the mallet. He finished cleaning and filleting the fish out on the deck, but put all the scraps in a bucket rather than toss them overboard. He said if he had to dive for the mallet in the morning he’d just as soon not attract sharks to the boat tonight.
I took a picture of Bud landing the fish and one of the fish on the deck and I’ll put them in the gallery. We measured it and it was 24 inches. Bud figures he got 4 to 5 pounds of fillets from it. This fishing thing is getting better. I hope this one tastes as good as the little one I had.