Tonight’s Supper’s on Us
The A-Z Blogging Challenge: 2015
“Anchor your pole and hold the boat steady.”
We were on Uncle Elmer’s 17-foot flat-bottom. Having left after supper from Uncle’s place, we had arrived at had the landing on the shores of Choctawhatchee Bay just before midnight. The timing was perfect. The tides would turn a little after 1:00 am tonight, so our best bets for gigging would begin right after that window of time. Being in place at our favorite marsh line was a must for tonight. It was my cousin’s fist experience with gigging.
“Easy now. The tide will pull us right top the marshes edge and we can maneuver the boat with the gigging-poles after that.”
“OK. Kill the engine. Perfect. Let’s light the remainder of the lanterns.”
With the lanterns lit and safely secured to the boat’s edging, we could clearly see the water’s floor and multitudes of small fishes. We could even see some former flounder tracks. We would gig along the sides.
We sat quietly unpacking the remaining gear and arranging the trough safely near the aft of the boat for the landing of our flounder. After reminding Andy of gigging stances and maneuvering, as well as how to predict the basic size of you catch, we sat on boat’s edge to await the arrive of our prey.
“There’s a line of them, just to your right,” I said. “I’ll man my pole and follow them. Be sure of it’s of size before you gig. There will be plenty here tonight. As they lay to rest on the bottom, submerge your gig. Keep your eyes of his two eyeballs. Then thrust it down to securer them right in tight up behind his eyes. Remember not to let go of the gig.” I repeated all of Dad’s gigging instructions he had drilled into me as a kid. They were like my gigging mantra.
I had not sooner gotten those words out went Andy let loose his first thrust. It was on target.
“Press down firmly. He has to be lodged on the gig, or he’ll wiggle and spasm his way off.”
“Got him!” Andy whispered triumphantly.
“Lift him out and guide him to the trough. Use the rod attached in the middle off the trough to dislodge your gig. Perfect.”
Andy was beaming. I was so glad he had gotten a good-sized flattie on first try. I was really glad that he had not let go of the spear! Then I would have had to go in wadding after it.
After Andy had speared three, all over 15 inches in length, I took my turn at the gig. Andy manned the pole for maneuvering and I began my quest. You don’t have to maneuver a lot once you find some; flatties are schooling fish.
By early dawn we had almost caught our limit. We were ecstatic about our catches. They were all good sized. Dad and Uncle Elmer would be surprised. Tonight’s supper would be on us.
A Gig: A six or eight pronged spear. Each prong is barbed. The spear is attached to a 10-12 for pole which is also used for maneuvering your boat.
A Flattie: A flounder.
An Ichthyologist: A person who studies fish.
Written for The A-Z Blogging Challenge: 2015. Requirements: Each day during the month of April a new blog is written based on a consecutive letters of the alphabet. The theme of my challenge is Alternative Aspirations for Picasso.