I guess that’s why they call it fishing and not catching

I know I usually take pictures of stuff I eat and the restaurants we hit and such, but honestly they don’t hold a candle to our daytime activities on this trip. I will say that if you do find yourself in Culebra at any point there are one or two points of interest as far as food is concerned, otherwise if you didn’t bring your own you’re pretty heated. The first is Mamasitas, a place owned by the demon offspring of Tommy Chong and Jimmy Buffet, and styled as such. All the wait staff says dude a lot and wears bandanas. Despite these facts it sits on the channel from one side of the island to the other so the view is nice and the food is pretty damned good. The other spot is a pizzeria, but a sort of island haute cuisine sorta’ of pizzeria, if that is even a thing.  The pizza is made to the highest of laid back island folk standards, there are also plenty of stray animals roaming the grounds and Rafa is kinda weird about animals. He picked up this cat and kept it on his lap through our dinner, I told him it probably had mange, he didn’t know what mange was and named the cat “mange” then continued to pet it and feed it table scraps.

IMG_2316I still think he’s going to break out in a violent skin rash in a few days. but he enjoyed his eating companion.

The next morning gave us another great sunrise and some bad news, serious wind coming from the south west that made returning to San Juan a possibly very uncomfortable experience.

We embarked either way on our return trip, planning to fish for at least half of it. But once we left the bay things were in a bad way, so we headed north of the islands to hopefully take refuge in calmer seas, I have to say this return trip was a workout, since the waves were coming from behind us and off center, every time we hit one it moved the boat in such a way that it tried to pitch out the person standing to the right of the center console, take a wild stab at who that was…

Either way we got north of the islands and dropped lines, time passed and the slightly subdued waves continued, I think we may have caught one fish the entire day, then we hit the half way point of Fajardo and the lines went nuts, when we all turn we couldn’t believe it, a god damned bird had taken a nose dive into our lures believing them to be a small school of fish, the poor thing was stuck. So we had no choice, we had to reel it in and get the hook or hooks out of it. I felt like buster, “there’s a bird on the boat!!”, “but it, walked on my pillow!!”

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Rafa’s holding a shirt over its eyes because the thing was vicious, but we got the hook out and it flew away happy as a clam. So we got back to port having caught a grand total of one tuna and one bird today, better than nothing I guess, if we had caught a fish using a kite I would have been pretty impressed so I took it as a win.

We headed back to Rafa’s where we cleaned up and took some siestas. I admired his passion for rum and his rum shrine:

IMG_2325That piece of green rock  in Buddha’s lap is one of a few I picked up on the beach in Culebrita, not sure how many are gonna make it back to the states but I got 2 or 3.  Then we headed back to my aunt Mari’s for a nice family dinner. All the aunts, being las picuas que son, got us all matching shirts and made us take pictures in order of height and skin tone.

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As clearly shown in the pictures above, the shirts say ‘Puerto’ on the front and ‘Rico’ on the back, and after several days at sea, I am still the whitest person for hundreds of miles. Then the aunts wanted to get in on the fun and did all the poses we refused to do:

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Then after a damn right gourmet dinner prepared again by Leo (who I realized has prepared every meal and snack I’ve eaten since arriving in Puerto Rico, less a steak at Mamasita’s and the pizza we picked up) a cake was brought out and people started singing happy birthday. I looked around to see who we were singing to. Ever heard that saying “if you’re playing cards and you don’t know who the sucker at the table is, it’s you” well, there were no suckers as I looked around the many tables and no one refraining from singing as is usually the want of the person who’s big day it is, then they brought the cake and candle over to me… odd since my birthday is next month but hell, who am I to pass up cake and a song (the Puerto Rican version of which is twice as long and contains a spanish refrain that I am completely unfamiliar with) so I stay until they got to the part I didn’t know, then stood smiling (well, trying to smile since pictures show I have very little competence in this area of being) and singing. Cake was had by all and smiles all around.

With all that has transpired here and the wonderful people I have met and re-met, it occurs to me that family is a strange thing. Don’t get me wrong I love all the people that have ever been introduced to me as “family” either because there is some bloodline linking us or because the person introducing said family member is as close to them as they are with any of their actual relatives. That being said, I’m pretty sure most of these people are actually my relatives in the classical biological sense, although the direct relations may be hazy, I do know that a grandmother somewhere a while back linked most of the matriarchs of the groups that I have had the pleasure of spending this past few days with in Puerto Rico. Everyone here treats each other with a love and respect that should be a standard for “families” both blood and implied all over the world. I thank everyone who I had the pleasure of interacting with in PR, this has been one hell of a trip and without you it would have not amounted to much more then some days off of work, but now I have the fishing trip of a lifetime behind me and a future family reunion to look forward to.

Cojelo con take it easy,

Rob

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2 Responses to “I guess that’s why they call it fishing and not catching”

  1. NO RASH ! ! !

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