Thursday, February 5, 2009

One Check on the Bucket List

Oh goodness. How am I going to do this in one post??? Honestly--this will be a loooong post.
On Tuesday, my dad took my brother Deke, sister Liz, her husband Dustin, and Sean and I deep sea fishing. Some of the best sportfishing in the world is off the coast of Baja California Sur (like I would know...but I know now). We had the choice of going for marlin on the Pacific side, or dorado (mahi-mahi) and yellowfin tuna on the Sea of Cortez side. Since it was my brother Deke's birthday a couple days later, his vote won--we went for the dorado and tuna.
We left early in the morning from the marina in San José del Cabo. Our boat was called the Cabolero, and our crew was Victor (he helped us with the fish) and another guy who captained the boat....can't remember his name. I could not understand Victor when he was telling us his name--it sounded like Beeeta--so he told us his nickname was Pollo. Wonder if he earned it like Owen did...
As we left the harbor, Sean had visions of BIG FISH in his head. He even wore his dad's "Here Fishy Fishy Fishy" shirt for the occasion. Wayne would have been proud...and a little jealous.

When a fish caught on the line, the reel went crazy. It was obvious something was happening. The first time it happened, I was standing right next to the pole. Sean snapped this picture as I squealed "Ack! whaddoIdo? whaddoIdo?" Unfortunately, the fish got away pretty quickly, right after I had plunked myself down in the chair and Victor was handing me the pole. Probably a good thing, 'cause I don't think I was mentally ready. Later, I was ready.
Liz caught the first fish. It was a dorado, and I think she probably pulled it in faster than any of the rest of us did with our fish. See the blood dripping off the fish? That was only the beginning...

By the time Victor had it photo ready for us, it looked like a massacre. Liz and I had blood spatters all over our pants and shorts, and there was even some on my face. Debby (my brother Deke's partner who used to be a strict vegetarian, and still doesn't like the brutality of carnivorous habits) had opted out of the trip because she gets seasick easily. It's a good thing.

This picture's a little fuzzy, but the excitement of the moment shines through!

Then Dustin caught his fish--it was a Bonito, which is smaller than the dorado or tuna, but good for ceviche. He ended up catching two--the only one of us to catch two keepers.

Deke was next--pretty fish, eh? His (or any of the other fish for that matter) didn't bleed near so much as Liz's.

This next picture is, I'll admit it, one of my favorites from the vacation. Check out those biceps! Thank you, Jazzercise. It was pretty hard work reeling the fish in--sure the fish was strong, but I think 90% of the difficulty came from me not knowing what the h*ll I was doing. I am not a natural.

But I got the fish!

Next was Dad's and Sean's turn. Originally Sean was going to be up next, but we decided he was bad luck, and Dad should go next. You see, Sean caught a bunch of big salmon while fishing with his dad in the year or so before his dad died. Despite numerous attempts since, he hasn't caught anything worth eating or keeping. Even in the Sea of Cortez, I had doubts on whether he'd catch anything. So that's why my dad was moved up in the rotation.

Just after my dad started reeling in his fish, a second fish caught, and so Sean was also reeling in a fish. Since the chair was taken by the Old Guy (hey, it said so on his shirt!), Sean had to stand to reel in his fish. He loved that part.

So Dad's fish? Turned out to be a small fish that we had to throw back. Dad still says Sean took his fish.

When Sean's dorado came out of the water, it was VERY feisty. Feisty doesn't do it justice. It was more like combative. Victor threw it in the hold, and told Sean that he'd come back for it in about ten minutes to get a picture. Unfortunately, Victor forgot, and Sean was too nice to remind him. So Sean didn't get a picture with his dorado (I do think it was the largest of the catch), but we did get this great photo.

And we got this video. Near the end, you can see the fish struggling, but alas, I didn't keep rolling until it came in.

Dad soon got another chance though--and he redeemed himself by catching our only yellowfin tuna of the day. That thing was heavy, and STRONG! Solid. Cool fish. I could go on, but instead just watch the video (please excuse the turn of the camera--I was excited).

And into the hold with the other fish.

After Dad's tuna, we were all satiated. Time to have a beer and Cheetos. I am my father's daughter, after all.

This is a great picture of my dad...amazing how pictures always turn out well when you're carefree on vacation in the Sea of Cortez.

...and Deke...

...and Dustin and Liz...won't they make cute blond, blue-eyed babies?

Chillin'. I swear I only drank two beers. I think I was holding this one for someone...maybe.

Sean just couldn't stop taking photos, apparently.

Don't we look like great fishermen? Awesome. But how did Dustin end up holding Sean's dorado?

As we were leaving our fishing trip, Dustin very graciously said to my dad, "Well, Dad, you've given me something I've always wanted to do..." To which my dad replied, "What, my daughter?" Dustin laughed and thanked him for that, too.


Michelle said...

What an incredible experience. Great memories!

A and C said...

I think you should frame the picture of Sean reeling in the fish. Great shot!

Kim C said...

Wow -- some fabulous photos. Ahhhhh... vacation baby...

Pisces Sportfishing said...

Awesome Blog guys,

Nice pictures and great vidz.

Hope to see you soon around here.

Your friends at Pisces.