Fishing is not one of my hobbies.
I am definitely not a fisherman?
As a matter of fact my fishing career started and ended on the same day.
A century ago, I went on a camping trip with my mother and some family friends. The plan was to camp out by a stream of water and wake up early to go fishing.
Mind you camping is also not in my repertoire of things to do. Sleeping in a tent that leaks and waking up being soaked to the bones, is not my definition of fun.
Now a days, when on occasion, friends say let's go camping......my immediate response is .....
"Oh, what hotel?"
Of course there is an exception there.... I'll go camping in a motorhome (caravan). After all the walls in a motorhome are sturdy and the bathroom/shower is within steps.
Ok, back to my story.
Camping we went. Woke up early in the morning and a group of us kids decided to go try out our hands at fishing. Not all of us had a fishing pole. The idea was that we would take turns with the poles that were available.
We were walking in a group, me a few steps behind the rest. The kid in front of me had his pole in hand and was swinging it as he walked. On one of those swings the hook on his pole managed to grab my sweater around my chest area.
I was hooked!
I started screaming bloody murder. The hook was totally tangled into my sweater and there was no way I could remove it.
Adults ran to see what had transpired.....after all someone must be on death's bed if they were frantically wailing.
No one died, but it did take my mother a few minutes to unhook me, managing to ruin my sweater in so doing.
That was the end of fishing for me. Back to the campsite I went.
And anyway, who ever thought that touching a slimy fish would be fun?
Fast forward to December 2020, when planning our trip to Anna Maria Island. We decided to add fishing to our list of things to do. Let it be known that my other half cannot add fishing as a hobby to his list of hobbies, but he has had a few more fishing experiences under his belt than I.
We were able to connect with a really great charter fishing company and charted a fishing boat.
The captain of the boat knew exactly where to take us to make this a perfect fishing trip. So off we went.
The weather, for Florida, was rather on the cool side and the water not the calmest but still, the sun was shinning and that is what counted. After creeping slowly out of the bay area, Captain Johnny put his "foot to the metal" or rather his hand on the throttle and we zoomed towards our target.
......................Egmont Key State Park
Named in honor of John Perceval, the second Earl of Egmont and member of the Irish House of Commons in 1763, Egmont Key has had Spanish conquistadors and nuclear submarines pass its shores as they entered Tampa Bay.
In the 1830s, as shipping increased, so did the number of ships that were grounded on the numerous sandbars around Egmont Key. Congress authorized funds to construct a lighthouse on the island. When completed in 1848, it was the only lighthouse between St. Marks and Key West.
When the Great Hurricane of 1848 struck in September, tides 15 feet above normal washed over the island and damaged the lighthouse. Another storm did additional damage, prompting Congress to appropriate funds to rebuild the lightkeeper’s residence and the lighthouse.
In 1858, the lighthouse was reconstructed to "withstand any storm."
During the late 1850s, at the end of the Third Seminole War, the island served as a camp for captured Seminoles and was later occupied by the Union Navy during the Civil War. In 1898, as the Spanish-American War threatened, Fort Dade was built on the island and remained active until 1923.
The Tampa Bay Pilots Association set up operations on the island in 1926. A pilot’s skill and knowledge is needed to guide ships safely in and out of the harbor. When ships approach Tampa Bay, a pilot boards that vessel and takes it to the docks. As the vessel leaves the dock, a pilot guides it out again. The pilots’ skill and knowledge helps guide the ships safely in and out of the harbor. This in turn protects the bay from environmental damage that could result from groundings and/or collisions.
The Coast Guard took over operations of the lighthouse in 1939, leaving the keeper's residence vacant. The decision was made to demolish the two-story home and replace it with a one-story barracks building.
Today, the island is once again inhabited only by its caretakers and the only way to get to it is by boat.
We cruised around the area waiting for the fish to bite.
The best part of chartering a fishing boat is the fact that all the details are taken care of; such as acquiring a fishing license, purchasing the bait, and even what area would be the best place to "park" the boat.
Ok to be honest, for the first part of the trip I took photos while the others waited for the fish to come on board. Hence, I was able to take a photo or two of activities that were happening around the area.
And of course more fishermen came around our area. Seeing all those birds hovering over us was an indication that fishes were abound.
And then it happened!
I saw this BIG FISH!!!
And all scrambled to lure him.
But suddenly he ceased to be visible and no one was able to hook him. 😄
Ergo, fishing for the "regular sized" fish resumed.
This story will continue in the next post.
But in the meantime, what's your guess......
Were we able to snag a fish or did we just hook another sweater?😑