So this really did happen???!!!
This year Joe decided to bring his 12′ V-bottom boat to Florida for the sole purpose of dropping the bait in a calm ocean. He was fishing for cut bait the first part of the morning unsuccessfully and decided to go down the shore where he had caught fish the day before hoping to be back in ‘just a few’, and leaving his lines in the water.
I was just sitting there minding my own business reading a book when he asked me to “just watch his poles” and make sure they didn’t end up in the ocean. Me…being the good steward that I am (obviously!) was watching closely when I suddenly saw a large fishtail flapping in the water! OH SHIT! I knew immediately it was on his line as soon as his pole started falling over! HA!
So I grabbed the pole and started doing exactly what I’d seen him do so many times before, though I had no idea how this was going to end. As I was reeling in the line and fighting the fish, I was also looking down the beach HOPING he would appear (right now!) and finish what he’d started!
Thankfully, there was a sweet lady (Lynn) walking by who stopped to witness what was happening. She was asking me questions that I did not have the answers to. I was scanning Joe’s equipment and the tools he’d left behind for me to get the hook out while reeling as quickly as I could (for some reason it just feels like something that needs to happen fast!) But neither of us knew what I was going to do when I landed it and would have to get the hook out of his BIG mouth and did he have teeth!!??
BUT…thank God as soon as I pulled him onto the beach… the hook broke! YES!!!! (it really WAS my lucky day!) WHEW!! Now… believe me… I know (being married to a fisherman) that breaking a hook is not a good thing, but this time it was! I had no idea how I was going to cut him loose, otherwise. I was so excited (and proud of myself) that as I pulled this guy from the water, I also dropped (probably threw!) Joe’s fishing pole- OOPS! I didn’t even remember that I had a pole in my hand, let alone what to do with it!
Lynn immediately retrieved it and told me it would need to be rinsed right away- this much she did know (enough to concern me anyway that I had just ruined his pole!) But I honestly didn’t care at that moment, I just wanted to get the fish back in the water as quickly as I could. Before I did though, Lynn said- “Get your camera and take a picture.” (Thank you, Lynn!)
It ended up being a nice Red Drum. Joe was thrilled for me! Well…besides the fact that his pole had gone swimming. 🙂 I didn’t know and didn’t even think about it being a keeper; again…not a fisherman, but after looking at the pictures Joe said it was too big to keep. I was relieved because yes, we would have eaten him. He doesn’t look as big in this picture as he truly was, REALLY! It was BIG! My foot is a size 8.5
Thankfully we had fresh water in the truck and Joe was able to get his rod and reel rinsed and ready for this guy! Yep, later that same day, this happened!
Patience and persistence.
This guy was caught and released unharmed. WOW! These moments are so thrilling…really! You never know what’s going to end up on the end of the line, but when it’s a shark of substantial size…like this one… just WOW! What a day this was!