We spent a day pier fishing at Mt. Pleasant Waterfront Park recently. We noticed a man that tirelessly worked the pier up and down with this rods. Each time he passed by us he was expectantly optimistic that the ~tide would change~ any second. But hours into in, he had only caught a few tiny pin fish. "They are going to start biting anytime," he excitedly told my hubby Don. Don asked "What time did you get here today?" he replied, "8:00 a.m."
At 4 p.m. we started pulling our rods in. Another fisherman walks up casting his line just feet away from the gentleman who had been there all day. Almost immediately, he pulls up a big flounder, minutes later he hooks a nice Red Drum.
Is it skill? Is it luck? Is it a numbers game, a wait out, a fluke, a test? "What about the person that comes and needs to catch their dinner and they don't catch it?" I ask Don. He looks at me wryly, without replying but implying "You're in Mt. Pleasant, not a third world country."
Similarities, we all want to outsmart the fish and we are willing to spend an 8 hour day, bucket of minnows and several canisters of shrimp to do it. Whatever it is, I have the patience of Job doing it. I have fished until I got bedspin drunk at night after closing my eyes. The stirring waters and cork still bobbed behind my eyelids.
There was a time that Don didn't like to go lake fishing with me. I could literally stay on the bank all day long feeding pinfish. On one such day, he sauntered over after several hours to peer into my redworm container. He dug a finger through to find that I was down to my last 3 worms. Contented with his find, he walked back to the grassy bank, stretched out and lounged, confident the end was near. I smiled, pulled out my knife and cut the worms into three pieces. Now I have 9 and another hour of fishing.
I'm not an adept angler, I just love to fish. I do everything wrong. I jiggle my line, I talk the whole time and I'll hook myself and you too if you are near. Also, at the end of the day I do what is called stupid fishing. I thread worms halfway up the line, sometimes put a shrimp and a minnow together on the hook and I've used plastic lures soaked in shrimp juice. Once when I wasn't ready to leave yet but sadly out of bait, I threaded macaronni from my packed lunch onto the hook.
I like cork fishing. And dont' understand why it isn't done in the ocean. One summer we took a trip to Sea Level, NC near the outer banks. We were staying at the Sea Level Inn. I could hardly wait to get my Zebco 33 with yellow and orange cork in the water. Don told me several times "That's not the right set up for the ocean." He was right...... and wrong. I am on the hotel' s fishing dock before check in. My line wasn't in the water ten minutes when it whizzed out, I had something big on it! It jumped and splashed and we realized I had a beautiful Red Drum behind that cork. Don jumped in the water to help me get it up. The restaurant at Sea Level said that is was one of the nicest Drums they had seen caught there. The chef took it into the kitchen and they cooked it for us for our dinner. Delish.
Our most recent fishing trip, Shem Creek Pier. Just glorious. Sailboats ease by the dock, they want to catch a breeze and so do I. Beautiful Hobie fishing kayaks ease beneath me idly trolling their lines while the lady fishing beside us has a fish so big on her rod that the line snapped. Dolphins ease through the creek to the delight of the boaters as two Manatee come to the edge of the marsh to feed to the delight of the pier fishers. Family pets sit at the helms of the boats while other pets stroll the pier with their owners, some lick our salty legs as they pass.
The ocean, the creeks, the marshes. Pleasures are enumerable, unpredictable and unpredjudiced. We pull in our lines, pack our rods and head down the pier. There's nothing in our cooler for dinner, no worries we say as we pull into Mt. Pleasant Seafood....Fresh Flounder!!