Wednesday, October 10, 2012
From End to End and Points in Between
When I woke up this morning and looked out the window I saw that we were being blessed with another glorious day. I decided to drive from one end of the pavement to the other to get some pictures, with a side trip down to the park. For those not familiar with Hoonah, the stretch of road that's paved is only about four miles or so. It starts (or ends) at the cannery and goes out to the airport. All the road past that is gravel.
It's nice to see that our fall is turning out so well. Frankly I was afraid that since our spring and summer were so cold and rainy it would be more of the same this fall. Thank God I was wrong. We've really enjoyed a fine October so far. Yesterday it turned a little foggy and rainy so I thought I'd go ahead and make some vegetable soup today. I was fortunate enough to bag a small buck last week so I had some roasts that I intentionally cut small just to put into soup. With this weather I probably should be barbecuing tonight. No doubt I'll be in the kitchen this afternoon sweltering over a hot stove, mixing all the tasty ingredients together while everyone else will be riding bikes and walking their dogs in the sunshine. Oh well... I guess I can't really complain on a day like today. Well, I guess I could, 'cause I do it so well, but there wouldn't be anyone to listen to me. They're all outside enjoying the weather.
I had wanted to do a post on a huge halibut that some friends and I caught years ago on the Miss Valerie. That was back when we were all living on the farm. My friend Mark Ryder emailed me the picture recently, but I don't know how to take the picture from his email and transfer it to my pictures file. Damn the ignorance! I'm sure that someone knows how, so I'll just have to wait until they drop by and show me. The picture shows Mark, Sam Sellick and myself on the tender where we sold the fish. The halibut is hanging from a boom. I can't remember how big it is, but it's longer than we are tall and looks to be in the four hundred pound range. It was an impressive fish in any one's book. Surprisingly, I don't remember catching it, although I was there on the boat when it was caught, and I don't doubt I helped to pull the monster in. I remember other things from those halibut trips- making fun of the F/V Mayo. The captain of that boat came charging up behind us and was unhappy that we were going to be fishing in the same area as him. Afterwards we pretended to be contacting various condiments on the VHF radio. "The Mayonnaise-the Mayonnaise- Pickle Relish calling." Sorry, but we were young and looking for anything to laugh about. I also recall catching several octopus or octopi I guess, if there's more than one. They would come up on the halibut hooks. We tossed them on the deck to use for bait later, but they managed to work their way across the deck and out the small opening of the scuppers to freedom. What I remember most vividly though, was Mark and his rain pants. On a previous trip he was wearing a pair that offered almost no protection from the elements at all. So for the next trip, having made some money, he had purchased a new pair of rain pants. I think they were Halley Hansen's, very heavy, very good quality and very expensive. Mark was as happy as a clam at high tide to finally be dry. Well, he hopped down into the cockpit where there were about a thousand sharp circle hooks hanging. Somehow he managed to snag one with his leg and ripped a twelve inch gash in the fabric. Being the compassionate fellow I am, I laughed my head off. Boy, the lengths people will go to in an effort to entertain. Fortunately he was pretty good natured about it and didn't toss me into the drink for laughing at his misfortune. When he visited recently I reminded him of that incident. He had long since forgotten about it. Thank goodness he has friends like me to remind him of the good times.