Larry’s gigin’ em


Well, today I am in Rockport, TX: it is still hot. I have been ready to head back to Colorado several times, but keep getting distracted by my dream of sailing. I found a thirty-nine foot sloop, the Flying Cloud, here in Rockport as I was checking up on another boat, a 35′ Erickson. Oh how I long for the open water and anchoring out on remote beaches! Wish I had my surf boards: sad face.

Last night I slept in my hammock next to some salt grass flats. There was a guy out in the water with a coleman propane lantern with a hand made backing plate to direct the light toward the water. He had a gig in his hand, and his girlfriend was keeping him company along the shoreline after being gouged by the residual clam shells. Larry and Christina were very friendly folks, as I have found many of these jolly Texans to be. We chatted shortly about how to prepare a flounder, and the in’s and outs of landing the elusive fish with his gig. “you have to look at the edge of the light for em’, not in the center” he told me “your lookin’ for a football outline”. All the while he was shuffling his feet and poking and prodding the shallow sandy bottom, “stingrays in here too”. Larry would later show me his swelled up leg from an apparent stingray attack, “I didn’t think it got me, I stepped on it and It was wigglin’ around when I kicked it away with my other foot”. Larry is an ex-marine, and his experience embody’s his motto “salt life man, salt life”. The allure is there for me as well. I love the untamed nature of the ocean. The free passage of shark, and whale, and sailboat to any horizon. Never sure what will be beneath you or around the corner, just another part of the food chain out there.  Larry also gave me the shrimp that he got with his cast net earlier, unnecessarily kind.  After ripping the head off they were ready for the skillet.  We exchanged numbers as I made my first good friend in Rockport, and I look forward to learning all that I can about ocean fishing from him before my departure.  

While writing this at the Texas Donut Shop I just made another new friend. His name is Scott, and he came up to use my phone because the cell towers here are intermittent at the moment. We got to talking about his life, it is his birthday and he is 44 years young. Last night he told me that he had resolved to hang himself, and posted something with that in mind on facebook. Of course there was an outpouring from his friends and family of love and hope, I’m getting teary now thinking of it. Anyhow, I’m waiting on a phone call for that 39′ Colombia, and we are going to hit the beach as soon as he gets back from wal-mart. If anybody needs a friend right now it’s Scott.

Author: Ronjohn

When I take a deep look at my ego, I see that it defines itself as a recreation bum. I ski, hike, rock climb, kayak, raft, sail, stand up paddle, mountain bike, rock climb again. I grew up in Grand Junction, Colorado. I am a vagabond extraordinaire.

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