Boating: Having off-season fun with DECYC members
May 18, 2011
“They're almost all gone, and we get to play with all their toys,” said Cleveland Jack as he docked his 'boat club' boat at Salty Sam's Marina.
“How was the fishing,” the Freedom Boat Club manager, 'Minnesota Frank' asked. Jack shook his head and pointed to the wind whipping down the bay. He made a rocking motion with his hand.
“Bad day for a Red fish tournament. I'll bet some of them are seasick today,” said Irish John.
“We needed the rain but not all that wind,” said North-shore Tony. “They say it's going to be a bad summer. I'm kinda glad I'm pulling out Monday.”
The powerful late cold front brought heavy doses of rain and wind but a fishing tournament is a fishing tournament, and you can't wimp out. Pushing on causes, equipment breakage and seasickness but since everyone has chipped in for the boat and entry fee, they can't break off for those simple things. And if it really gets bad, the Coasties will med-vac the sick team member off the boat.
It's a poor soul who suddenly discovers that he 'does' get seasick during a fishing tournament. Most hearty fishing types claim they don't get seasick but most of them are wrong. A northwesterly wind of 25 or more can wreak havoc on the stoutest hearty angler. Anchoring in that seas-state is a sure way to turn green.
Even during a fishing tournament they all work together! His/her teammates will pull up their fishing lines long enough to help load their teammate into the Helicopter basket dangling down but to stop fishing for anything less is a no-no.
“Are we going to the Taste of the Beach tomorrow,” asked Boston Bob at the clubhouse later that day.
“The Sunday weather report is for a very nasty morning. It might make today seem mild. I don't think they'll have the boat flea market at Bonita Bill's. I'm looking for a graduation present for my granddaughter,” said New Joosey Joe.
The weatherman was right, but you already know that unless you just flew in. “Who buys their granddaughter a present at a nautical flea market?” Joe explained that she was in the Merchant Marine Academy and needed decorations for her room. But the huge puddles precluded the flea market.
“There's always the Taste of the Beach, but let's wait until the sun breaks through,” said I. Shortly afterward the sun broke through the threatening cumulus clouds. Off we went to the Bay Oaks Recreational Campus. Arriving shortly after one in the afternoon was a wise decision because the breeze was still up but the clouds had rolled on and the puddles were evaporating.
I don't like paying to get into an event and then paying to sample the food, but we all want to support the Beach restaurants. There is always some exotic fare served up as the restaurants vie for prizes that they can include in next season’s advertising. The Big Game Waterfront Grill served Shark Sliders, which I think won the 'most unique' contest hands down. They were surprisingly tasty so they better have them on the menus soon.
Parrot Key and the Big Game had inflatable Ohio State and Wisconsin mascots in front of their booths, which drew a crowd having their pictures taken. Doc Fords served up ribs, Maria's new place served up Tex-Mex and several newer restaurants went all out to impress the crowds and judges.
The music was loud and the beer was cold. It was a pleasant afternoon. I saved hundreds of dollars on sunglasses with Nello at the sunglass booth and, after a few hours; we departed for some air conditioning and a view of the water. We are waterfront junkies after all.
“Why wasn't Club Mary (Fish Monger) at this years event,” Commodore Jim asked. Answer: They’re closing June 1 for four months. “There were some newer restaurants that should have been there, then.”
We agreed but the Taste of the Beach is a local thing and at least one newer restaurant hasn't joined into the local thing, as of yet. “Can you sell me a half priced ticket,” asked New Joosey Joe. I said no. “Why not, I'm a loyal viewer of your son's television show. I bought a Matanzas a couple of weeks ago?”
“That's true but he wants you to buy them when the show is on the air,” I said. Joe professed his loyal viewership and I had to agree. “Joe, I'm sorry but he doesn't trust me to carry around spare certificates.”
“Fine thing, I miss part of the nightly news on Tuesday and Jeopardy on Wednesday to watch the show and youse can't even sell me a ticket,” complained Joe. I felt bad but the rules are the rules. I bought him a beer at the Big Game to make up for it, and he said he'd continue to watch.
Boatguy Ed is a retired bottom paint maker and is currently a volunteer extra on his son's Boater's Treasures television show that sells half priced dining certificates, www.boaterstreasures.com. Send your comments to boatguiEd@aol.com!