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The Fishing Trip

Sunday morning got off to a good start. I had a very good dream in which someone, a guy, I care about very much ended up saving me from some dastardly machination. I don’t remember exactly what the problem was, but I know I was distressed and he came to my rescue. It’s the first time ever that I had a dream about this person, plus he cared enough to see me through troubled times. It was a nice, warm fuzzy feeling, even if he might not feel that way about me. It’s nice to have a dream like that. He’s often not very far from my mind.

I didn’t want the warm fuzzies to end so I stayed in bed as long as I could and then eventually I got up and got ready to go. Thankfully I didn’t have to be up at any ungodly hour in the morning to go. My father, my sister Loretta and I left around 9:00 am to meet my other sister Sandy and her husband Mike around 10:00 am to go fishing on the Delaware Bay. The ride down was long, but not long at the same time. I don’t have a symbiotic relationship with boats, really. I was part excited and part dreading the trip. Usually I’m afraid I’m going to get the hook stuck in someone when I go fishing.

It was the first time I’d gone fishing since I was 18 – which is the last time I’d gone to camping at Chrisfield, MD at St. Janes Island State Park. We missed the exit to get to the loading ramp and ended up passing Sandy and Mike. Got turned around, got to the dock, and got minnows and other things we needed at the bait shop, then we went to put the boat in the water.

Sandy and Mike said to use the last two loading ramps because no one uses them. There’s a reason no one really uses them. They’re not steep enough for the bigger boats. You have to put your rear tires in the water if you want to offload your boat. Loretta and I had to pull the boat, literally, off the trailer in order to put it in the water, because when Mike tried to push it in, it went only about half way and stopped. We got it into the water fine and then had to tug on the rope to make sure it didn’t drift off with the current as boats are wont to do sometimes.

Everything is set to go, we hop in the boat and take off. Sandy and Mike have a much smaller tracker boat than we’ve got. This was my father’s new 20 ft cabin cruiser. We were supposed to follow them out in the water, but they were going much faster than we were, especially in the areas where you weren’t supposed to cause any wake (waves that hit the shoreline). Tiny boats make less waves. Plus, dad was having trouble steering going at low speeds. The boat wanted to swerve this way and that.

Eventually, once we got past the slow area, and were out in the bay a bit, we stopped to confer where it might be best to fish. Mike had an area that he’d pulled up on the GPS a few times, and so we went there with about 20-21 ft of water to fish in. We opened the canvas tarp over the captain’s seat, and went on our way. Cooler out of the cabin, fishing rods, and bait – we set up shop to go fishing once we found our spot, both boats deciding to drift rather than anchor while we fished. Dad had to set up three new rods since he chose to buy new ones rather than check to see how well our old ones were holding up still.

Once I got my rod, I went to go sit on the bow (front) of the boat where there was a tiny cushion and fish. There was less chance of me hooking someone there since there was a cabin between me and the stern (back), and less chance of our lines getting tangled. When dad asked if I knew how to cast, I confidently assured him I did. Embarrassingly, I had to have him remind me how to do that though, as it became abundantly clear that with 12 years having passed since I last fished, I had forgotten how to cast my line. Casting shown, getting it after the first attempting of being shown, I was confident I could fish on my own without being bothered.

I was the first to get a nibble, but I had to check a few times to be certain I was actually getting nibbles. We let out enough line so that the weights would drag on the bottom of the bay, and so the line was tugging every now and again with the up and down motion of the boat against the waves. Once I was certain, I yanked the rod and started reeling in. First at fast, then more slowly, so I could be sure I still had something on the line. I did! When my line came to the surface it was abundantly clear that I had something. I’d caught a MD Blue Crab (well, it /was/ a blue crab, even if we were in the Delaware Bay!). Unfortunately, before anyone could snag it with a net, it’d let go. My father got a nibble too, but his dropped off and so he had to recast.

Unfortunately we didn’t get to see how well our fishing luck would hold out because a storm came up and we had to haul ourselves back to port. My father had failed to check the weather for the morning, instead deciding to go by “Saturday’s Weather Report” for Sunday, even though it is abundantly clear that weather can change at the drop of a hat! Mike and Sandy had idled their boat along side ours, as we’d drifted pretty far apart, and told us, at first, that a hurricane was coming and we needed to get back. Of course, I was wondering if he was joking since the only hurricanes I knew about were already gone – having been out to sea and having never gone anywhere near shore. He assured me he wasn’t joking. It turned out to be a tornado warning for the NJ/Delaware/Eastern Shore of MD area – and while that wasn’t a hurricane, it was just as bad.

We argued for about 10 minutes about whether or not there were any storms coming, and while that was going on it was just getting darker and darker on the horizon. My father didn’t think Mike knew what he was talking about, so had to check the radio for himself. No mentions of storms came across whatever stations he was listening to, so Mike had to turn on his radio to let my father listen for himself. Eventually, it was decided we should go back to shore.

We returned to port in no time, making sure not to make any wake through the slow boating areas, and got our boat out just in time for the thunder and lightning to start. Me? I secured my things, since I got stuck in the boat after we put it back on the trailer, passed them on to my sister, got off the boat and ran to the truck after I got them back from her. I hate storms. Worse, I fear lightning. I don’t play in storms like some idiots do, tempting fate to be struck down where they stand.

Afterwards we went to Sandy and Mike’s for dinner. They cooked the bushel of crabs they’d caught earlier that morning before we went fishing, and also made pork tenderloin for those people like me who pretty much hate any kind of seafood. While they were cooking, Loretta and I sat and watched Bourne Identity while everyone else was in the kitchen chatting away.

Eventually, dinner ended and we went home. I had to travel back to Glen Burnie still. It was a very fun day, overall, and admittedly I wouldn’t mind going back out on the water again. I enjoyed myself immensely.

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