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Jonathan Roldan's Blog

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Tuesday, June 14, 2011
You get only one chance at this
Friday, July 08, 2011
Dialed in on dollars


Don't mess with mama!
We  cautiously approached Larry's panga from a distance. He and his wife Laura are a great retired couple who love to fish.  Today, they were fishing just south of  Cerralvo Island.  As we got closer, it was clear that Laura was on a huge tuna.

 

She was sitting on the little triangular deck at the bow...essentially "on the floor."  Her butt on the deck... feet forward and braced up against the inside of the gunwale which, at the bow, was only about 8 inches high.  Like the position the anchor-person assumes at the tail-end of a tug-of-war-rope!  Rod triple-bent in her straining hands with the tip almost touching the water.   It was evident that the  heavy 22-foot  fiberglass panga was slowing being towed by the massive fish.

 

But, all was not well.

 

She was pulling for all she was worth in the bow.  Grimacing with effort.  Lips pursed.  Arms locked with knuckles just barely above the rim of the gunwales.  She seemed to be "glaring" at hubby, Larry.  And not because of sun or sweat in her eyes.

 

Larry's at the opposite end... in the stern.  Fumbling with his own rod and limp line in the water  and not even paying attention to the epic event at the bow.  Disinterested.  Distracted.  Like he didn't even care that his wife might be on the biggest fish of both their lives. Ho-hum...

 

What's wrong with this picture?

 

As we pulled up closer, I shouted out, "Nice fish, Laura!  Are you OK?  Do you need help?"  (I was wondering why Larry wasn't giving much support).

 

"Larry, do you need a hand? Want me to jump aboard?"

 

He looked at me and just shrugged.  "Ask HER if she needs help..." he said dismissively gesturing with his head towards his wife at the other end of the panga.  He didn't even look back at her.

 

Whoa...

 

I looked at Laura.  She looked up and hissed through gritted teeth.

 

 " I told him if he comes anywhere near MY fish, I'd kick his butt! He's trying to coach me.  He wants me to hand off the rod to him!  He won't shut up!  Make him leave me alone!  This is MY fish! If I'm going to lose it, I don't need HIS help! And I'd appreciate it if you'd move your own panga away too so my fish doesn't get tangled!"

 

YEOW!!!

 

I looked at Larry.  He looked at me.  Rolled his eyes and looked at the blazing Baja heavens. 

 

I laughed.  How could I not? We literally "tippy-toed" our panga backwards out of the way.  Even the two panga captains (stifling grins) knew when to just shut-up and get out've the way! 

 

Laura the SHE-ANGLER had spoken and  unless we wanted a can 'o' whupass unleashed on us, it was best to get as far away from ground-zero as possible.

 

I loved it! I am WOMAN hear me GROWL!  See me FISH! I don't need no help!

 

I'm seeing it and loving it more and more. In the old days, Baja fishing was a testosterone laden bacchanalian "fishing fiesta"  of sun, beer, and fishing.  An all-guy-man-love- beach party. ("I love my fish brothers!")

 

Not so much anymore.  Not only are we seeing more wives, girlfriends, sisters and mom's coming down, but these ladies don't just wait for you to tie their knots and bait their hooks. 

 

They'll elbow you down the rail.  They'll be the first to grab that rod if the clicker suddenly goes off and pull it out've the holder. Too slow.  YOU  lose! They don't need to be rescued.   They have no intention of handing off the rod to you so don't ask and they'll only listen to your coaching (nagging) to a degree.  So get outta their way!

 

And they usually look pretty cute doing it too! 

 

Personally, I love having them on my boats.  They're quick learners. They listen.  They have patience. Unlike so many of us guys that try to brutalize and bulldozer our fish into submission, the ladies finesse their fish.  Poco-a-poco!  They smile alot and aren't so grumpy if they lose a fish ("I was gonna release it anyway because it was noble and cute!") or if the fish aren't biting...

 

"Oh look at the dolphins! This is the BEST day ever!"

 

Just don't get in the way when they're down in the trenches! They're good.  They're getting better.  You know it's true and we're all having more fun because of it.   Mama means business!

 

Oh, Laura got her fish.  Larry could not have been prouder!

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