“Make sure you take some Gravol,” our Fishing Guide, Paul said just before he drove away in his jeep. Surrrrre, I thought, as if that is going to make a lick of difference. We once sailed to Alaska on a 960 foot cruise ship with extra wing stabilizers on each side and I was still nauseous the entire time we were on the boat, so I wasn’t harboring (no pun intended) any delusions about how I’d fare on a 40 foot fishing vessel, luxuriously equipped or not. “I don’t think I should go,” I told our little group who was traveling in the Dominican Republic together. “I don’t do well in ocean boats.” Our friend Shannon said, “You’ll be fine, Jo. Just take some Gravol and make sure you eat a good lunch and it’ll be great. We can tan and drink beer while the guys fish.” Greg piped up with, “Well, you can’t stay here by yourself. What if you get kidnapped or mugged or worse because you’re all alone? You have to come.” Well, there you have it. Guess I’m going fishing tomorrow. My stomach was already doing flip flops at the thought of being out on open water in a “tiny” little boat, but I foolishly started to believe that it would, indeed, be okay if I took a couple of Gravol, put on my Sea Bands and didn’t drink any alcohol during the four hour trip. If I can jump out of a plane, I can cruise the Atlantic, I told myself stubbornly. Yah, right.
The next day, everybody woke up, all bright eyed and pumped to go fishing – everyone except me. My gut instinct was telling me to stay on land, but like so many women tend to do, I ignored the gut and went with the head instead. I am so smart, S. M. R. T.! We were ferried out to the “big” boat on a smaller boat and, even though the water was fairly calm where we were, we could see that the waves beyond the breakers were much larger than the puny ones we were resting on.
Here’s a pic of the two boats.
And here’s some shots of us heading out to the boat and being on the boat BEFORE we actually went anywhere…
Look, I’m even smiling a little.
The ride to the spot where we would first throw in the lines was about 45 minutes from shore. I was okay at first and, after about twenty minutes, I thought that it wasn’t so bad after all. No sooner was that thought in my head than the driver slowed the boat down to point out some Humpbacks and we started to rock and I thought, Oh Oh. Even after he started up again and we were moving along, skirting the waves, the damage had already been done. I managed to keep my lunch down for about five minutes once we reached our destination and then is was Blluuaahhhh, Bluuaahhh, Blluuaahhh, at a steady rate of every five to six minutes for the rest of the trip. And, Ms. “You’ll be fine, just eat a good lunch and take some Gravol” Shannon was right there, up at the front with me, puking her guts out, attracting all sorts of pretty fish with our chum of the stomach! Ha! Even her husband, Jason, was puking after awhile and, who could blame us, with 15 foot waves picking the boat up and slamming it back down. The guide said that it was one of the worst days for waves and wind that they’d had all year – awesometastic!
We were scheduled to fish for FOUR HOURS and all I could think, after about an hour of vomiting continuously and feeling my head whirl around on the spin cycle, was Oh man. Somebody just kill me now. Put me out of my misery. I’m dying anyway. I managed to look back once to see Greg and Vic standing there, fishing, drinking beer and acting as though they were standing on land, not a rocking, swaying, vomit-inducing death trap, and I hated them just a little bit.
While Shannon and I were hanging off the front of the boat, dying, the boys all seemed to get a fish on at once. Jason – and this is a total hero of a fish tale – was puking and got a fish on. He stopped puking, got up, reeled in a huge Dorado, handed his rod back to the guide and resumed puking. That’s some crazy dedication to the sport, me thinks! Greg’s fish was feisty and ended up dragging him all the way around the boat. He stepped over me, stepped over Shannon (picking up her hat, which was almost falling in the water, and pulling her back into the boat because she was hanging so far off the edge) and managed to make a full circle before he, too, reeled his fish in. Vic’s fish didn’t seem to be any trouble at all. Michelle, who also wasn’t sick, did her best to get some pics of the fish and the mighty fisherman, and all three guys were wearing grins from ear to ear while two of their wives were practically dying at the front of the boat. Men!
After all the excitement died down and they all patted each other on the back, the guides asked them if they wanted to go to the next spot (there were six prime fishing spots in all) and I’m sure they were pumped to try it, but a quick look at the two pathetic souls up front who were currently green and shuddering, hanging on to the boat for dear life, quickly changed their minds. “Uh, maybe we should just head back in,” I heard my husband say. I could not have loved him more at that moment and my only thought was that soon I’d be getting back to land – glorious, amazing, awesomtastic, fantabulous laannnnnnnd!
Of course, I didn’t figure in the fact that we had to once again cruise for another 45 minutes to get back to the launch. Ugh. What a nightmare. As we were cruising back to shore, I lay with my head in Greg’s lap, praying for it to end, listening to the guys gush about how awesome the fishing was and how they should do it again, without the women next time. Amen to that, I thought to myself.
Here’s a pic of how I looked on the ride back. Definitely NOT a happy camper.
Once we made it back to shore and I finally stopped feeling as though the world was tilting, I managed to snap some pics of the guys and their mighty catches. I apologize for the quality of the pics. I hadn’t become a photographer yet and didn’t really know how to use my camera to get the best results. The guides cooked one of the Dorado for us the next day and it was the most delicious fish I’ve ever tasted. Loved it. Can’t wait to eat more when we go back there – sans the fishing part, of course!
I’m glad they had a good time, at least.
I learned a few things on that fishing trip – always go with my gut instinct, Dorado is delicious, and, most important, my legs are NOT sea worthy.
Happy Thursday. I wish you enough.