Ahoy me hearties,
November got off to a very unusual start with one charter for a group of bird watchers who took a box full of the smelliest “burly” imaginable out to the “drop off” not for the fish but to view the local sea birds. As it was a fishing boat they trolled a few lines but the main interest was photographing the oceanic bird life with an impressive array of cameras, and lenses you could have hung a line from. Apparently the “twitchers” as bird watchers are known had a great day as they spotted something, very unusual, that hadn’t been seen for many years, while the crew stood idly by, totally bemused, with nothing to do but polish their hooks.
Sad news – For all the many of you who went out on Mena 1, Captain Heem, “The toothless terror of the Andaman Sea” died earlier in the month. R.I.P. my friend, see you in pirate heaven, you were one of the best skippers around.
P.I.S.T. (Phuket International Sports fishing Tournament) got off to a great start and on the first day 4 Sail Fish and 1 juvenile Marlin, caught on a Tuna line, were logged in. The Marlin although small must have added a load of points to someone’s score tally. Meanwhile, Queen Marlin limped home on one engine having “nearly” caught one of the biggest Sails the PGFC (Phuket Game Fishing Club) entrants had ever seen, and to add insult to injury were disqualified for being late for the evening checking in. Yea, fishing’s not always about the fish, hard luck guys, I hear someone brought a banana on board. Keel haul the lubber!!! This year the first prize went to the Triple A Team, unfortunately I was unable to attend the prize giving which I believe was quite fortunate as the weather which had held off for the competition decided to join the party with a vengeance.
The E.F.T. (Exotic Fishing Thailand) Charity competition which I mentioned last month raised 63,000 Baht for the Make a Wish Foundation, the winner being Paul Panabaker from Canada with the biggest fish and the most species. Runner up was Neill Campbell a well-known local celebrity.
The next competition is the “BIG ONE”, The RBFC’s “Classic” 3 day Similan’s competition; the tournament has only a few spaces left on “budget” boats with sleeping accommodation and food provided by the “mother-ship” and the tournament’s control vessel. Enquiries to Warren Crow at the Rawai Beach Fishing Club’s web site, prices around 40 to 45,000 Thai Baht per head, all inclusive, great value.
This month’s humor was provided by a tourist when out fishing, he asked about port and starboard. I explained “Port is Left” and “Starboard is Right” facing the bow (pointy end). While explaining the safety issues arising from navigating at night, “as the port lights are red and the starboard green”, we both looked round for an example and were more than slightly perplexed to find that our local Thai boats had all sorts of fancy colors some even with “fairy” lights and all this as we listened to the various captains using the ship’s radio as a karaoke. T.I.T. Only in Thailand.
The fish of the month prize, caught just after the PIST competition, goes to a Thai boat, which we will not mention because of their attitude toward the “catch and release” principal. Anyway guys, Great Fish.
Tight lines, me fisheroos.