We continued with the good weather and peaceful sailing and generally made good progress last days. We hoisted all sails we could for a while, then we switched to sailing just with our headsail as this allows us to sail at a better angle even if this means sacrificing some speed. All in all, we just passed the point where we have less than 1000 nautical miles to go (probably about 7 days to destination).
At night, winds drop, and sailing is slow, with sails flapping with a loud bang when they get filled again by the wind. Almost depressing 🙂
And so were the three fish we missed during the last two days. I told you about the like-scissors-cut, lucky lure, in my last post. I gave it another chance and another fish took a bite but I lost it trying to get it on board. And again…and again…
I changed the lure to one which was labeled as “tuna waster”. Some combination of burgundy feathers and red plastic “tentacles”.
One hour later, I got a strike (as it’s said in fishing terms) and after not too much fight I had on board a nice, 70-80 cm wahoo fish (I believe slightly below 2 kg). I never had one, neither fishing or in a restaurant, so I was looking forward to it. We gutted, gilled and chopped the fish and Alina wanted to cook it in he oven with vegetables and serve it with polenta.
I reluctantly said yes, as she was dreaming of cooking the fish this way for some time already. And maybe because yesterday was the national day of Romania and a polenta would have been appropriate :).
As the fish was small, I cast the line out again with the “tuna waster”. It is true, I am dreaming of a tuna, made sashimi or our favorite Peruvian style ceviche, right then and there. Ceviche is basicaly raw fish with a lot of lime and lemon juice, some red onion, coriander leaves, salt and a touch of olive oil. Yummmmy!
Another half an hour or so, another bite. I went to pick up the rod and I could hardly hold it. A monster! And this started the toughest fight I had with a fish until now. I don’t know how long it lasted, maybe 20-30 minutes, maybe more, but I know that I was exhausted and my arms were hurting like hell. A couple of times I’ve put the rod in the holder and the fish managed to almost get snatch it.
Two years ago, on my first rod and fishing experience, I caught a quite big tuna and managed to bring it near the boat after some really long fight. But, as I didn’t know much about fishing, I asked Alina to get the camera, take photos, etc. while I’ve put the rod in the holder and let the fish in the water, by the boat. Big mistake! Revived by getting back in the water, he snapped and broke my holder and gone were fish, rod, reel, holder to the bottom of the sea. For the rest of the trip, I felt like the main character in “The old man and the sea”.
Back to our fish, this time the rod was tied to the boat with a string, so I was less worried about losing it. A few more episodes of reeling-in the fishing line and we see the monster: a quite large dorado (or Mahi-Mahi) but definitely much smaller than I thought judging by the fight. I would have preferred a tuna as this was the 4th dorado we hooked since we left Gibraltar.
After a bit of action and we managed to get it on board. It was about 1 m long and I weighted it, just to be surprised that it was only 11kg. I am wondering, if I fought so much for a 10 kg fish, how do those people manage to catch a 50 or 100 kg tuna or marlin?
Gutting, cleaning, filleting were tedious jobs and at the end my back hurt terribly. My new, clean, clothing – as I had the other day my mid-Atlantic shower – are all stained and smelly. I took an aspirin fro my back pain and rested for a while while Alina cooked the “fish on a vegetable bed served with polenta”. Which was delicious, by the way.
Paul doesn’t want to eat anymore meat and fish as he realized that one has to kill the fish or animal in order to eat it. So part of the fishing procedure is to distract Paul’s attention from the on-boarding of the fish and what follows.
This would be the fishy stuff of the last days and as we have enough fish for a week or more, we stopped fishing. Keep your fingers crossed for the winds to be good, for us to arrive well and in time in Martinique.
This is Seven Seas! Over! (to you).
PS: I would like to hear you after the “Over!” but untill we get on land there’s very little way to read comments if there are any).