March 4, 2015

Deep Sea Fishing Sri Lankan Style-day 8

It might seem counterintuitive, given all the pirate lore out there, but being approached by a decrepit boat with a wildly waving crew can be the highlight of a passage. We were prepared for the fishermen as we closed with the Sri Lankan coast. Other boats mentioned that the boat crews love to trade. On the surface they seem to be looking for beer and smokes but when we said we had neither, but wanted fish, it seemed anything would do. We were offered 3 mahi mahi for a container of orange juice. We only took one, but the real trade seemed to be a chance to laugh and wave and check out each other's boat.

We have a love-hate relationship with fishermen. At worst they fill the sea with unmarked or illegal gear and turn the ocean into a hazardous obstacle course. It's the best fishermen we love. They're often fishing at a substance level, with barely seaworthy boats, but their seamanship skills are humbling and their good nature is infectious.

Maia counted seven young men, on that small boat, 200 miles from shore. The cabin was a crowded wheelhouse and gear spilled over the decks. She tried to figure where they'd sleep or even find shade in the hot tropical sun. And maybe where they'd cook and what they might eat. They had questions too; where were we from and where were we going, but we had no common language for questions. So they circled us, calling out "hello" and "Bollywood" while one danced. And we called out good luck, wishing them safe fishing.

It's a small thing to trade for fish in the middle of the ocean, but it's a moment that will linger. The fish tasted of gratitude.
Sent via Iridium Go!

6 comments:

Jennifer Fink said...

It's a huge thing to trade fish in the middle of the ocean, and your daughter (and ultimately, the world, through your daughter's awareness of it) will benefit.

judith said...

Awesome!

Nabola said...

Awesome post ! Really
It's a huge thing to trade fish in the middle of the ocean.......Thanks a lot for sharing your post !
I will visit regularly for update post!
Again Thanks !

Jobab said...

Great post ! i have done all to often, also any sort of rack system or places to put things for easy access is a nice addition. i personally pick out a few lures i want to use and keep them in front of me all the time so i don't have to reach behind to my tackle box and make a racket getting that out.

Gofran said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Gofran said...

Great post.
It's really great thing to trade fish. But most of the time boat crews are so wicked that you can trade with them. But It seems you look good with them in your article. Thanks for sharing. Good fishing trade.