“Many men go fishing all of their lives without knowing that it is not fish they are after” – Henry David Thoreau
Since we’ve been on vacation, I’ve pretty much been sleeping in everyday. Except for today. Today was different. We were all up at 6 a.m. getting ourselves ready for a morning full of fishing. Dad woke us up with dramamine and a glass of water in hand. Mom had the sunblock sitting out on the table ready to be slathered onto all exposed skin surfaces. Kelly was struggling to even be standing up right, which isn’t unusual for her first thing in the morning. I was toasting my bagel and scrambling to get all of my stuff, including my camera, ready to go.
Mom and I had been talking about going on a fishing trip over the past few weeks, so we were pretty excited to try it out. Mom has done some fishing back home in lakes and streams with her own mother. Myself, I think I’ve cast a fishing rod a total of three times in my life, and it was probably back when I was about five and had a toy fishing rod with fruit loops attached to the end of the line. Needless to say, it was a pretty new experience for the both of us!
We used a local fishing company called Pesca Deportiva. A waiter we had been talking to for two days at the beach club we were using recommended it to us, not to mention Juan, our “fishing guide,” spoke English well enough for us to have conversations
with him. He was also very nice and genuine, seemed to have a good knowledge of fishing and was eager to help us. Juan’s boat, “Nina” was 26 feet long, so pretty small. Heading out from the beach this morning was no easy ride, despite Juan’s constant reassurance that the water was very calm.
This was “no bueno” for Kelly. I don’t think we were even 30 minutes into the trip when she started coughing – a tell tale sign of what’s to come next. And that’s all I’ll say about that.
After about an hour of gently rising and dropping in rhythm with the waves and slowly trolling down the coast, one of the fishing lines finally caught. Now, the nice thing about going with a fishing company is that they will do everything for you. Juan set up all of the fishing poles, baited the lines and monitored them as we sailed around the ocean. We got to just sit on the boat and wait for the fish to come along. Anyway, one of our lines finally got a bite, so my family sent me to the back of the boat to reel it in!
Unfortunately, since I’m a lefty (power to lefty’s! we’re awesome 🙂 ) I had to reel with my right hand and hold the pole with my left. It ended up working out OK, because it was a BIG fish (OK, I know people have caught bigger, blah blah blah, but I thought it was rather large. See the photos below and make your own judgement!) and I was having a hard enough time trying to just keep ahold of the fishing rod. But Juan helped me out and the boat captain ( Charlie) suited me up with that holster thing you wear around your waist to hold onto the rod better. Lucky bastard got a nice boob graze in there while trying to get it around me!
I dont know how long it took, because I was busy just trying to focus on reeling. I ended up catching a white marlin, so it was a lot of hard work! Juan was very concerned at first that I wouldn’t be able to bring it in. But after a while he kept telling me that I was “muy fuerte” and FINALLY I got that damn fish into the boat! Apparently they are only allowed to catch one white marlin per day, so I was the lucky one who caught today’s!
In the meantime, my father started mimicking my sister’s actions (poor guys) so after the fish was settled into the boat we took those two sickos back to shore before going out for mom to catch a fish. Unfortunately, we had no such luck 😦 but we did see a few sea turtles! It’s mating season so they were pretty “busy.” One turtle spotted us watching him and quickly popped his head under the water and started swimming away. Bashful much?
When we got into shore, Juan cut up the marlin for us to take home. Additionally, he gave some to his boss and kept a little for himself and Charlie. The fish seemed to be the talk of the town. Everyone was around checking it out and asking questions.
Overall, I would say it was a great day of fishing! It was a blast, and although my arms are still really sore, I would definitely do it again and suggest it to friends and family! Stay tuned for a photo blog next week of some more of our adventures in Playa del Carmen!