Thai version

Saturday, October 13, 2007

“The Old Man and The Sea”

As we head out to find another area were the birds are working we see a large swell come up behind the boat. I am at the front of the boat and we have all four of our rods out trolling. Then we see it, it’s a whale shark almost swimming on the surface with about a dozen pilot fish with or by it. It dives under our boat its head is from 5 to 7 feet past the front of the boat when the tail is from 5 to 7 feet past the back of the boat. It is almost as wide as the boat it must be about 32 to 35 feet long. Heinz yells lets try and catch him. That would be like a dog chasing a car. Like trying to catch a whale from a canoe. I finally convince Heinz that they only eat plankton and there is no way we can it. They are not meat eaters like you think of when you say the word shark. They only have small teeth not large teeth for ripping and cutting like most sharks have. If that we did get it, how could you get it in, and what could we do with it? We are able to see this whale shark several more times on trips out fishing then it is gone. I hope it left safely and was not hunted or hurt by the locals.

We finally see more birds and head for them. As we get near them we get two more hook-ups from tuna. When we finally get these two tuna aboard we have just enough time to make it back through the slot in the coral and then can anchor the boat, before the tide is to low to make it through the slot. On our way back through the slot/gap in the coral, we can see the Somalia still fighting the marlin on a hand line from his dugout. This reminds me of the book “The Old Man and The Sea”. It has been 5 hours since that we had gone out in the morning. We wonder how long the Somalia had been fighting the marlin before we had seen him. When we get close to the gap/slot in the coral we can see the coral very clearly on each side of the boat since the tide is low. After making it through the slot we make it to where the anchor is for the boat. We tie the boat up to the anchor. Then we shuttle the fish the rods and reels and the all back to beach. Were we load these into our awaiting vehicles. I glance back one more time to the Somalia still battling the marlin from the dugout. I cannot help but wondering who will win this battle. It is as it should be one man one great fish in a great battle on an open ocean.

Later on another trip I manage to hook into a 225 pound blue marlin with a lure and a rod that I had made. We landed that marlin and it was quite a trophy. Since there is very little fishing tackle in Somalia we make most of what we use. We can get some hooks and that is about all. I can build the rods and me and Heinz both make lures. I got some of the new rubber squid lures that is very good on catching fish in Somalia. We dye chicken feathers red or green to make some of the feather lures or get some parrot feathers which are colorful when that we can. It is and old art still practiced today. I have seen the lures that both the Somalia’s and the Kenyans make and use they are very basic but they work. It seems that if the equipment you use is made by yourself it adds something to the conquest of bringing in your trophy.

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