01 May 2008 | Ua Pou, Marquesas
I'm sure most of you have already heard the devastating news. A few of the "granola crowd" may have even predicted it. But I'm here to confirm what can only be called an unprecedented global catastrophe.
THERE ARE NO FISH IN THE OCEAN.
None, nada, zilch. Maybe the dolphins got 'em all, maybe Dr. Evil ate them, I don't know. What I do know is that there can't be any left, because we would have flippin' caught one if they existed. We've criss-crossed this darned ocean, dragging enough line to make the world's biggest cat's cradle. We've rigged enough lures to open our own tackle shop, and we have plugs, floaters, squids and rapalas in more color-combinations than Binney and Smith. We have altered the depths and distances that we fish at, we have both hand-lines and a trolling pole going at all times, and all gear is sized accordingly, just waiting for that 40 pound Mahi Mahi or 65 pound Wahoo. We've tried everything except a ritualistic voodoo dance, but still there is no joy in fishville.
Oh, sure, we hear from other cruisers who have just landed a trophy, and we were even given some fresh Wahoo by the kind folks on Don Pedro. A mercy gesture, I'm sure (though I'm convinced I saw a Safeway price tag on it). The radio is filled with chatter, claiming that the fishing is great, and that even a fool can catch fish out here. Ouch. People have even taken to setting up fish-cleaning stations on the sterns of their boats, like they were a mothership processing the fleets' catch. Jeez, enough already.
So, now I'm faced with 2 awful truths.1) the oceans are utterly and completely devoid of anything vaguely resembling a fish, and 2) cruisers are liars. The first one comes as a surprise to you, I'm sure. As for the second awful truth, let this be a lesson to you. Never, ever believe what some drop-out cruiser in a far-away land tells you. Never. It just might be a fish story.