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The Not So Old Man and the Sea

Feb 7, 2014


Location: Underway to Maldives
Author: Forrest Richards
Another fine and splendid day here on the Schooner Argo. We spent most of the day sailing at a good clip in a rolly sea. After lunch those shipmates taking the PSCT class took their practice test on the COLREGS that they have been working so hard to learn. Then we did some drills to make sure everyone remembered what their jobs were in the event of a fire or an abandon ship situation. In the late afternoon our hansom and brave second mate Forrest, set a fishing line and a few seconds after the line hit the water there was a tell tale snap as one of the sea’s great fish took the bait. The battle was on! In a Hemingway-like struggle, man and nature went face to face in a battle of life and death. The mate squinted through the grizzled eyes of an ancient mariner as the fish leapt into the air. As the fading light of an Indian Ocean day caught the blue-green sides of the dolphin fish (what the Spanish call Dorado), the mate set the hook and began the process of landing a fish on a hand line. With the hook set deep in the the fishes lip, hand over hand, the mate closed the distance between the fish and himself. When the fish was ten feet off the stern Forrest knew he had to make a plan how he would land the fish. But there was no time for a plan; the fish had to be boated. Grabbing the leader and flinging the Mahi Mahi over the rail, the battle was over and it fell on to the victor to decide the fate of the vanquished. Looking into the eye of the fish, Forrest with a belay pin in his hand ready to bludgeon the fish into submission, a sense of calm came over the Mate. Slipping the hook from the lower lip of the fish, he carried it over to the rail and returned it to the sea from whence it came. ~First fish of the trip 12″ long about 2 pounds~