I have come to realize in the past month why hard physical labor puts me off kilter. The heat and humidity don’t just sap my energy, they drain my creative pipes dry. By the end of the day, meaning dark-thirty after all the tools are put in the shed while the mosquitoes do their own sucking, I barely have enough gumption to turn on the shower and step in. Pulling back the covers, lying down, and closing my eyelids then drains the last few drops of energy.
Most of my creativity comes forth in the early morning, which has been preempted by the need to start work on my outdoor project very early while temps are somewhat cooler. I am sitting here this morning, producing this post for you instead of being up at the camp preparing for the Big Event, because you have been neglected—by no choice of my own, please understand.
The thing that has been taking all my time and consuming all my energy is a second-hand boat that needed some TLC in order to become the premier fishing vessel I knew it would be for Casual Charters, the fishing division of Wetland Tours. And if any of you like a good story, I might be inclined to tell you how I acquired it, but not this morning. It is a 24-foot Carolina Skiff sporting a 115 Yamaha, four-stroke outboard engine. She rides on a tandem-axle trailer with hydraulic brakes, and her purpose is to SET ME FREE!
This morning, I take great pride in telling you that all (I hope) of the work is F I N I S H E D. I learned to use a heat gun and how to repair fiberglass. I now know what gel coat is. I experienced using a wet sandpaper block to sand off the excess dried gel coat, which “coats” the sandpaper requiring it to be rinsed off frequently. But the lesson that will really stick with me is that if you use your left hand to wipe the gel coat off the sanding block when you dip it in the bucket of water, you will eventually sand the first layer of skin off your fingers before you realize you’ve done it. And when you pour acetone on a rag you are holding in your left hand you realize REAL QUICK what you’ve done!
And to my friends who stopped by (rather than just honking and waving) and offered a helping hand, I am forever grateful and invite you to go fishing with me this fall.
The Miss Louisiana trip was the “maiden wetland tour” in the new boat, and she performed well. New boat crossed Lake Decade twice as fast as Old Faithful (my pontoon boat), which brings me to the “maiden fishing trip” voyage that took place Sunday.
T-Gig, a local gentleman who has fished from here to the coast faithfully for the past seven years agreed to go with me and show me spots I had never fished before. We went all the way to the Gulf of Mexico coast, a 45-minute ride in the new boat, to scout for speckled trout.
This is a fantastic red drum that he caught on his speckled trout tackle. T-Gig is an impressive fisherman, and it was great watching him finesse that big fish in. What impressed me about the fish was the light color. Most of the reds we catch inland are a much darker gold or bronze color. This one appeared almost silver, with a slight pink tinge on its fins. Can you see that? We let this fish go to live a longer life.
T-Gig did put us on some trout, but only one out of every dozen was big enough to make it into the box. He even managed to catch this beautiful lady on his trout rig . . .
You can tell this is a Lady Blue Crab because of her beautiful orange claw polish. Oh, wow, I just had an inspiration. I’ll have to write to OPI and send them this picture and ask them to duplicate the color and call it “Crab Claw Orange”. And then my next thought is duplicating all the shades of red fish, and on and on and it could my own line of natural nail polish colors found in the wetlands. Okay, sorry, I got carried away, but I will think about this some more . . . .
Termite was on board for the trip–his first fishing trip in a long time with me. It was nice having him around again, just like on the tour last week. I do miss his company now that he is in public school.
And now, to mention the Big Event. One of the local charter captains saw the new boat in the driveway at the camp and called to ask if it was mine and to ask if I intended to fish out of it. Yes and yes. So this Saturday will be the first official fishing charter on Bayou Woman’s new boat. I will be busy as a one-armed fisherwoman tending to four fisherman that day, so I doubt there will be any time for me to take photos; but if you want to hear about the trip, I’ll do my best to come back here and tell you about it on Saturday night (if I have the energy) or Sunday morning. Deal?
Oh, and I’ll come back here later today and post some pics of the boat. I have to go take them first. Can you imagine BW being TOO BUSY to take pics of her new boat? Now, that is busy, cher!
Busy as a bee in springtime,
PS: Living in the new house is wonderful. The central air conditioning is divine. The palmetto bugs that moved in during construction aren’t welcome, so someone please come get rid of them for me. I don’t smash them because I can’t stand the POPPING sound they make. Ewwwww! (okay, I resorted to Bengal last night.)
PS2 – Tonight I am attending a monster-piano-concert, where Dotter will be playing one of six GRAND pianos on stage. They all play at once and many other combinations, like four pianos with two players each playing different parts simultaneously. It is one of the most amazing piano concerts I’ve ever attended. I think this is the third one she’s played in, is that right Dotter?