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Monday, January 23, 2006

Silecroft: fishy blog

Arrived at Silecroft at about 1.30pm to a light but nippy offshore breeze, and a thin watery sun struggling to penetrate the alto-stratus. The beach is clean, snag-free sand with shingle at the top of the shore - nice conditions for beach-casting. The trouble with nice beaches on nice Sunday afternoons is the anglers' curse, namely, people. With luck most will just walk past, but dog-walkers are a real nuisance.The animal comes sniffing round the tackle box and, once, a dog gulped down a whole session's bait in one go. A dark glare at the owner is often enough to get the animal called off, but for less sensitive owners a remark such as "Madam, I'm concerned that the poor thing might get a fish hook in its mouth" is sure to get them calling Fido or Rover to heel. Almost as bad are those who want to linger and talk. Hey, fishing is a solitary activity where you can be at one with the sea and nature, pitting your skill against the instinct of the fish, not being distracted from concentrating on your rod tip by talking. Pubs are for talking. Also nauseating on beaches are kids. They have a habit of hanging around fidgeting, demanding to see your lug worms, anything you happen to have caught and bombarding you with a barrage of stupid questions like "What's the biggest fish you've ever caught". Fortunately kids are usually easy to deal with - refuse to answer their questions and with luck they'll get bored and wander off to bother somebody else.

Today there was a slight ground swell that had my two rod tips nodding rhythmically to the waves. I was using my preferred tackle, two-hook paternosters using Avis booms with mackerel strip on the top hook and lug worm on the bottom. After half an hour of inactivity, one rod tip nodded suspiciously out of synch with the waves. I picked it up and held it with the taught line running over my finger tip and there it was, the distinctive tug-tug and it was FISH ON!!! Turned out to be a full-house, a small whiting on the top hook and a decent flounder (1 lb 2 oz.) on the bottom. This is not unusual, the whiting probably hooked itself first and its wriggling attracted the attention of the flounder.


Then a period of quiet before another tidy flounder was wound in. At the top of the tide around dusk there were a few missed bites (undoubtedly small whiting which are good at stealing your bait without getting hooked, the runcible fellows) and with bait running out it was time to pack up in the gathering gloom. Three and a half hours for two flounders and a whiting, but I've done a lot worse. Flounders are not particularl tasty, but they do make good fish cakes where you can spice it up with a dash of anchovy essence, some capers (that's a right caper, that is) and cayenne pepper. Lunch tomorrow sorted.


Blogger carwynfowler said...

"Almost as bad are those who want to linger and talk."

> A mixed blessing for the busker - distracted from earnings but chat could sometimes turn into a large donation and even a useful gig contact...

9:45 pm  
Blogger simon said...

The Fish Song.

I was a cook and she was a waitress,
Down at Salty Sam's seafood cafe.
And somewhere between the clam juice or the seaweed salad,
Some little shrimp just lured her away.

Oh! I lobster but never flounder
He wrapped his line around her and drove off in his carp!

Oh! I lobster, but never flounder
I Octopus his face in,
He'll only break her heart.

I said just squid, and leave me for that Piana tuna,
If you want to trout something new.

She was the bass I ever had,
Now my life has no porpoise.

Oh my Cod, I love her, yes I do
Boy, I sword fish she would come back to me,
I'd show her a whale of a time.

You know, I've kelped her picture in my wall eye just for the halibut.
I wonder if she kelped mine in her perch?

YES! I said PERCH! (Some of you are looking at me as if you have lost your herring!)

I think I am getting a haddock!

Well, I bass quit sea horsing around, O
Or you folks will go into a state of Shark!

If I get out of here alive It'll be a mackerel!

"Frankly Scallop, I don't give a clam"!

2:10 am  
Blogger Maalie said...

Ha! That's brilliant Simon!

11:12 am  
Blogger Kiwi Nomad 2006 said...

Hey I worked out how to add a Blog Roll bit to my blog, so you are the first one on it. I know nothing about HTML, but can work out how to cut and paste on a good day!

12:38 am  
Blogger Kiwi Nomad 2006 said...

Hope you are not suffering too much with those winds from Siberia. I have been watching how cold it is in Europe at present on our news here. Have to say that I am glad I am here for our heatwave and not over there yet. In seven weeks time it should be a little warmer over there - I hope!

5:24 pm  
Blogger Merisi said...

@ Simon:

6:32 pm  

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