The guy, Michelle, is a good dude. He’s a fellow spearfisherman and was genuinely surprised when he learned I enjoyed freedive spearfishing. He said it’s rare to see an American that enjoys freedive spearfishing. Apparently it’s a much larger sport in Europe.
Anyways, I woke up yesterday morning kinda early and took a look around. Michelle was out on the back of his trimaran having a shower – nude. He saw me. I waved, he waved. He went back to showering.
I went below decks to give him a little privacy, but when I came back up his wife was in the same spot showering – also nude. So I gave up and went around the boat hanging clothes off the lifelines. This happened in May when I was down here, almost exactly the same way. I’m not quite there yet, but I’m sure I’ll be taking showers on the back of the boat somewhere along the way.
After their showers I motored over and we talked dive spots. Apparently there are a couple close by. Not great, but decent. Michelle says the fish are smart and small. I prefer big, dumb fish. But I’ll give it a go when I’m done with the dog-snapper in the fridge. There’s also a nice reef out in the open water, off of Isla Grande that I learned about from the French girl that works at Panama Reef Divers. I don’t know what it is about this place, but the only people I seem to meet are French and Dutch. I’ll take a whack at that spot when I have both engines functional. Hopefully Thursday or Friday.
Fishing in Puerto Lindo
So, about that eel. Day before yesterday I had such a great day that I decided to pour myself an early rum and Coke. Well, that rum and Coke turned into a couple. And then I got a little bored so I decided to try out my 12V underwater LED light. At night it is supposed to attract fish. And it does. That thing is bright. A fun toy to liven up the night, which can get a little boring when sailing around by yourself.
Back to the story. So here I was, a couple rum and Coke’s into the night, playing with my new light. There was a ton of bait gathered around it so I decided to throw a hand-line out. In about twenty minutes I had a good pan-sized dog snapper. Not bad. I refilled my drink and went back at it. A little play on the line convinced me that there was something on the other end. I jerked, it jerked. I pulled really hard and eventually it gave way. When it got into the light it looked like a ball on end of my line. It was a damn eel.
I put it up on deck to remove the hook and it starting writhing all over the place. Enough that it clipped my drink. I watched, in slow motion, my cup tip over – spilling my fresh rum and Coke, and bouncing down the steps into the water. What a disaster.
Now I had to get the hook out of this slimy, writhing, toothy critter without getting a handful of teeth. Eels have a nasty bite; a friend of mine suffered a bite going after a lobster and it made him pretty ill.
Long story short: I got the hook out and didn’t get bitten. I’ll chalk that up as a win, despite sacrificing a rum and Coke and one of my four glasses onboard.
Another recent discovery is Monkey Beach – I named it that. Apparently it has no name, and so that’s the name. You can hear the howler monkeys all night, but they don’t come down from the hills. On the other hand, on Monkey Beach – you can occasionally see Spider Monkeys out messing around. I’m going to head over there one day when it’s not pouring rain and see if they’ll let me sneak a picture or two.
And with that, it’s time to get back to the boat. The boat projects are piling up and I’m finding it takes 300X as long as it should to do anything onboard. And there is some exploring to do, between the rain showers.