Tuesday, 13 August 2013


So that became the routine,  early starts every morning with a belly full of food before heading out to sea,  they rotated skippers and crew everyday which was great as we got to know everybody better and got to experience different locations and styles of fishing.  The scenery never stopped blowing our mind and the heat and humidity never stopped kicking our ass, especially when you were pulling a fish up from 300 meters down! 

The heat really was oppressive out in the boats everydays but I wouldn’t hesitate to do it all again.  There is no ice to chill the fish (or take a few cold beers) and so we learnt about the ‘Solomon’s Esky’.   Basically, when you caught a fish,  you just threw it under the wooden bench seat!  Haha   we had never seen anything like that either and all exchanged funny looks for the first day every time it happened. 

  We didn’t even know it was possible to eat them after such treatment, they weren’t bled, weren’t put on ice….   Yet were delicious every night and you would never know the difference?!   I guess it shows what great cooks they are!   It became another of the many sayings and jokes that the three of us still share about that trip.   Just chuck it in the ‘Solomon’s esky!

Probably our favourite skipper was Raymond, a funny little bugger with a quick and twisted sense of humour and a look about him that just told you,  you would never want to mess with him!  Not an angry bloke in the slightest, always the first to crack a joke, but you could tell there was a side to him that would not be wise to cross.

Not that he was a big guy, Raymond was probably under 5 foot tall, actually a lot of the guys there were quite small which surprised us.   Well, small in height, but as I said earlier, all of them had the kind of physique you would have to spend years at the gym to achieve.   His favourite joke, every time somebody would have a pee out the boat, ‘Oh, no!  The boat is leaking!’

By about the third day they were starting to warm up to us and so began the ritual of getting on the piss at what could possibly be one of the greatest bars on the planet.  It was a simple, yet beautifully crafted, wooden hut on stilts, and it was made to look so nice and inviting, it would be bad form not to stop and have a cold beer! 

This camp had obviously had a few Aussie’s through the place as they really did a great job of keeping enough drinks cold.   The bar then had this big deck off the front and you were about 10 feet above the sand once you were out there.  The waves and high tide would come up right underneath it and the view was just spectacular, reef just in front, ocean as far as you could see, palm tree lined white sandy beaches to the left and right and the camp and jungle behind you.  There are not many places I would rather sit in the afternoon with a cold beer (or Johnny arrow) and let the night roll on with good company.  

 Lucas even managed to hook a shark from up there one arvo!  We could see em’ swimming around in the crystal clear water off the front of the balcony, so he grabbed a rod and started throwing a popper out (a type of lure that splashes along the surface, for you non fishos’).   It took a while but he eventually got the hook up, what a commotion that caused!  Everyone came down to the beach to watch as he fought this thing from the bar balcony, beer still in hand!
 A little 4-5 foot reef shark was finally landed and I won’t go into details as to how the locals got the lure back,  let’s just say there isn’t a lot of respect for the shark over there, and funnily enough it’s one of the very few things these guys don’t eat. 

  Seventh Day Adventist is the religion of choice over there now and they won’t eat sharks because they don’t have scales.   They mostly don’t eat shellfish either, probably the only reason there are still lobster and crabs around I guess.   The shark was ok and lived to fight another day, though I doubt he’ll be going back to that bar for a while though, get’s  a rough crowd in there some days!

The infamous bar!