BootsnAll Travel Network

24 hours in the life of fisherman Steve.


00:00:01 – It’s been a long napless day. Time to hit the sack. Rig up the big pole with the largest grunt (type of perch) around 6”. Toss it out, hook up the bell, free up the drag so I can hear the line run out and put on a bell as a strike alarm.

00:00:02 – 5:00 – Wake up hourly sometimes because I am dreaming about catching a fish or sometimes because I actually caught something. Replace bait throughout the night as needed.

5:01- 6:00 – The call to prayer songs breaks the calm of the night. There are four mosques around the city and each one has to sing out to its followers. I will admit that they have better than average vocalists. The two roosters they keep in the yard start their calls.

6:00-8:00 – Some people begin to do their exercises in the grandstand/boardwalk just up the river. The sun rises from across the river and it will start to get hot. With the sun up the big fish are done feeding so it is a well deserved cat nap for me. Everybody is up and about doing chores or getting the café open. Henry is back from the market with breakfast and coffee. After bad nights fishing it is not a good idea to go to the market to see the nights catch being brought in and sold. Inadequacy.

8:00-10:00 – Time for some bait catching and prep work. I rig up my spare sets that I will use. Tidying up the room and a cool down shower are in order. If it is a sunny day, which it usually is, I go down to do some laundry after the ladies are finished. This usually provides for a humorous distraction for the ladies as they would gather and sneak peeks at me doing laundry. I knew I would be scrutinized so I put extra emphasis in using the correct technique which I have picked up watching the ladies from 50+ countries.

Marge: What’s he doing?

Fran: I think he’s trying to wash his clothes?

Marge: Are you sure? He seems to be getting them dirtier. Oh geez, I think he broke that shirt.

Sue: I think he’s a bit retarded.

Fran: Marge, go help him.

Marge: Heck no, he’ll probably think I want to marry him. I already have a useless husband and three kids to take care of. The boy has no job, no house, no car, and he kinda smells like the fish market, and not in a good way.

Giggles, laughs, smirks.

Me: (smiling, scrubbing, ringing, slapping, triple turn squeeze (Botswana style)).

10:00-13:00 – Time to catch a little bait and to toss out the big rig. Doubtful about catching anything, but you never know, and it’s still fishing. It’s lunch time so I take a run down to the Moslem mama’s place for some curry then over to 7-11 for a slurpee. On the way back I stop at the market for some fresh shrimp. Back at the hotel, I go to the café and buy a Fanta and get ice in the Slurpee cup to keep the bait fresh.

13:00-17:00 – By 13:00 the sun has passed over the top so now the balcony is in shade and the breeze is coming off the sea. Henry and I usually just hang out on the balcony or the common area table, reading chatting. If a sweet craving hits, I take off down to the beach for a Superlicious. I don’t know what the real name is, but it fits. Kind of like the Razzmatazz in Malaysia but adapted in Thailand and made impossibly better. In a plastic cup you drop in some cakey bread chunks, a scoop of sweet rice, five or six fruit baller size scoops of lemon sherbet or ice cream, black gummies, red gummies (look like pomegranate seeds, corn, mangosteen chunks, a drizzle of sweetened condensed milk, and a candied cherry. Ten Baht (28 cents) for a smashing dessert. I also try to pick one tourist site whether it be the beach, a jungle walk, swimming, a temple, the market, the fishing shop, or anything to burn a couple of hours.

17:00-19:00 – With the coming of sunset I take a drive to the local beach for sunset and to see if anybody is fishing/catching anything. I also stop off for one more sundowner Superlicious.

19:00-20:00 – I need to get dinner before 21:00 curfew so I head over to Mama Muslim for dinner and then to the banana pancake cart down by the boardwalk for a nightcap pancake and to see if they are catching anything on the boardwalk.

20:00-24:00 – This is the beginning of the big fish time. The big boats have finished passing through the channel and the river is quiet. The moon rises around 22:00 right across the river just as the sun did. I catch half dozen grunts and store them in my bait bucket. I set all heavy rigs on both poles with big baits and set the rods up with the bells in front of my screened window so I can hear and see them from bed. I either read or play on the computer with the occasional scramble to throw on a full set of clothes and a scamper outside to pull in a fish. The mosquitoes are pretty brutal even with the swallows at sunset and the bats at night time (bats find it hilarious to smack into my line and then watch through the window as I scramble out of bed trying to get on a full layer of clothes on and out the door. They haven’t cut my line yet because I have no problem using bat as bait. Same with the house cat, it has a bell on it’s collar so when it’s caterwalling around at night I am smacked out of sleep only to find it laughing outside my window.

And that is 24 hours in the life of me. I have actually relaxed a bit on the fishing as the first four days I was really intense. I only left the balcony to make a run for food and a combined stop at the market for bait and the tackle shop for more supplies. Once I started pulling in some big ones, the pressure was off from the ladies for the crazy guy who fishes from the balcony. They bought in to the system and I have gotten more efficient by cutting down at the low percentage times. This has given me a chance to explore and to solidify this town as my favorite so far on the Asian trail.

Downstairs love shacks.

Upstairs fishing shacks.


3 responses to “24 hours in the life of fisherman Steve.”

  1. Marisa says:

    Looks like you’re finally on vacation!

  2. judy says:

    Ah, it’s great to see someone living the passions of their life!! Fisning, slurpees, Fantas, and every once in a while a McDonalds!! judy

  3. Bev says:

    Hi, I’ve been following your very cool blog for months now. Read it from the very beginning and it is fascinating! Someone suggested “the Travel Channel” and I totally agree that this would be so interesting for many people. Those who will not get a chance to see the world. Your personality and quest for adventure add so much more than a documentary. I will continue to follow your travels and wish you the very best. Oh and thanks! Bev

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