How Not to Deep Sea Fish
Hours ago we struggled through snow drifts. Now, under Venezuela’s tropical sun my husband and I anticipate tomorrow’s adventure, deep-sea fishing in paradise!
The hotels warn to use the tour groups to avoid beach cons. But us prairie people are smarter than that; we will not be conned so off to the beach we head to book our trip…
Sunrise finds us on the beach. Our guide is ready and he looks downright unfriendly.
The small rustic, wooden boat holds an umbrella and a cooler. The guide speaks only Spanish. Truthfully, he does not speak at all. It is only the taxi to the harbor I say to the others.
We arrive in a harbor filled with luxury fishing craft. I contain my “I was right” smile. Within minutes, the smugness slides deep into the bowels of the Caribbean as we chug out to sea. A trail of blue smoke follows in our wake.
It is not the big fishing trip we expected but it will be fun, a delightful morning of fishing on the high seas. Although it is clear we won’t be going far… there are no life jackets.
Many miles later…
There are five people onboard and four wooden spools of fish line. Our guide ignores us, takes a spool, and catches an angelfish. Someone else catches a nasty looking eel. Silent, the guide severs the line with a machete-sized knife. What else lurks below?
Sunburned and exhausted we inform our now surly guide with hand gestures that we would like to return.
The boat swings from the sheltered chain of islands to open water. Land is a speck in the horizon. The gentle swells morph into something far more sinister. They crash over the bow. A massive field of jellyfish clusters around the boat.
Hours after it all began we grind into shore! A spat worthy of both an orchestra and fireworks erupts between the other couple. The guide glares at the dueling duo.
We end the day alone, the feuding pair and hostile guide dispatched to a bad memory. Ice cubes clink in glasses of rum and coke, and with coke at a premium - more rum than coke of course…much more.
And the adventure continues…