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If It Can Happen, It Will~~~

keeper 2012/03/02 19:15:53

This is another one of my fine adventures in South Texas~~ Please Enjoy...

If It Can…It Will…



We had heard that the flounder were just laying around waiting to be gathered at the Port Mansfield Channel. It was only August, so this wasn’t the annual migration where they leave the Laguna Madre Bay heading into the deeper, warmer waters of the Gulf of Mexico. Jeff had been a commercial fisherman for more than twenty years. I had limited experience gigging flounder, so was eager to further my education, besides earning a few dollars. The market for selling flounder was established at two dollars per pound. With any good luck, we could make a couple of hundred dollars while having some fun. Some plans are better left on the drawing board.



Neither one of us had a vehicle capable of negotiating the twenty-two miles of beach required to reach our destination. We were able to convince a friend to transport us up to the cut in exchange for gas money. Loading our provisions of four coolers (three filled with ice to preserve our catch) and assorted camping gear, we partaked on our merry adventure. The sun was shining; the wind was light from the south; the temperature hovered in the eighties; and we had a case of beer! Who could ask for more?



We were dropped off on Friday near the Mansfield Jetties, bidding farewell to our buddy with the understanding that he would return on Monday to get us. After setting up camp and having a bite to eat, we waited for the midnight tide that was due to come in. High tide allows the flounder to move all the way up to the shoreline, making it possible to walk with lanterns and gigs without getting our shorts wet. That night proved to be fairly successful, yielding about forty pounds of fish. We did have to tramp a total of nine miles but we figured we needed the exercise anyway. We finally fell asleep just prior to dawn, well satisfied with our efforts.



Waking at noon on Saturday brought us an unwelcome surprise. The wind had picked up considerably, to forty miles per hour, with gusts nearing fifty. Our tent became a casualty, leaving us virtually unprotected from being sand-blasted. Hiding behind a dune, we consumed most of our liquid refreshment and listened to the howling breeze. By nightfall, it had moderated significantly but had made the water so murky that it was impossible to attempt gigging flounder. Murphy’s Law of things going wrong seemed to have come into effect.



Sunday morning brought more wonderful news. The wind had shifted to the north, and yes, it started raining. One of the cooler lids had blown off during the night, allowing the ice to melt. So now we were running low on ice to keep our fish cold. The day was too miserable to enjoy any outdoor activities and the closest indoors was thirty miles away! All day we spent singing "Oh Woe is Me", until we ran out of verses.



Monday’s weather eased up enough to let us go exploring. Two miles south of the Jetties we discovered a dune buggy someone had abandoned on the beach when they got stuck in the sand. Through our unequaled mechanical expertise, we were able to get it running and free from its entrapment. Figuring this as a charitable act of God, we loaded our "gift horse" with our two coolers of flounder and anything else we could fit into the limited available space. We stashed the rest of our equipment, hoping to come back another day to retrieve it.



With the rain coming down again, we made a desperate run back to civilization. The company which had rented the dune buggy was relieved to have it returned in one piece. They gave us a ride to Port Isabel where we could sell our fish before it spoiled. Somehow in the transition we missed our friend, who valiantly drove in the bad weather and soft sand all the way up to the channel only to find an empty campsite.



When events run afoul, there is no telling when they will end. I believe that Murphy must have been an optimist.


 


James V. Weber 3/23/94

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  • Dwight PWCM 2014/05/27 19:05:59
    Dwight PWCM
    +1
    Great trip, love to do that someday.
  • keeper Dwight ... 2014/05/27 22:04:41
    keeper
    +1
    Put it on your Bucket List~~ ;o)
  • Dwight ... keeper 2014/05/28 00:49:54
    Dwight PWCM
    +1
    I need another notepad.
  • IndyLinda 2014/03/01 00:29:38
    IndyLinda
    +1
    Good one!
  • keeper IndyLinda 2014/03/01 00:35:29
    keeper
    +1
    Thank you Linda~~
  • wolf_bunny 2013/01/11 20:50:34
    wolf_bunny
    +1
    wow....that sucks...good thing u had some survivor skills , it cold have been worse bear grills
  • keeper wolf_bunny 2013/01/11 20:57:06
    keeper
    +1
    You are right...we were thanking our good fortune! LOL
  • being me 2013/01/11 20:47:28
    being me
    +1
    "When events run afoul, there is no telling when they will end. I believe that Murphy must have been an optimist."
    LOL! I think so too:-)
  • keeper being me 2013/01/11 20:49:13
    keeper
    +1
    Hahaha... glad you could identify with that line!! ;o)
  • being me keeper 2013/01/11 20:52:19 (edited)
    being me
    +1
    LMAO! Yes I can;-)
    Karma has been great to me so it's all good;-)
  • keeper being me 2013/01/11 20:57:38
    keeper
    +1
    Good to hear!!! ;o)
  • being me keeper 2013/01/11 21:03:05
  • Tamara McMillan 2012/12/12 22:09:46
    Tamara McMillan
    +1
    Nicely done! Thanks for the story!
  • keeper Tamara ... 2012/12/13 23:12:43
    keeper
    +1
    Thank you, Tamara~~ ;o)
  • fluer 2012/12/11 18:45:52
    fluer
    +2
    LOL Keeper I grew up on the Gulf in Mobile and we had Jubilees on Mobile Bay where the flounders would just come up to the shore and lay there and we would take washtubs and go gig them until we filled our washtubs. You learn early on to not gig more than you want to clean and scaling them witha fork is a pain so we used a hose, But it took all day if you got a number three washtub and filled it up. Luckily the beach was only 40 or 50 feet from the dirt road where we would park so we did not have to camp out to do it. Such fun!!! Kids these days just do not know what fun it is to grow up like we did where you get too many flounders and are stuck cleaning them, or you go up a fig tree and the lower limb breaks and you can't get down, or the sand pear tree just drops you from 30 feet. Hop scotch was great fun and you knew just which chain would curl just right. The phone had a rotary dial and a cord and the wall was only three feet from the phone. Or you got tired of getting the short end of the stick and having to go gather the eggs from the hen house. But then we did not have the internet even in college so amazingly we had to use real books!!!
  • keeper fluer 2012/12/11 20:50:36
    keeper
    +2
    Now that was a sweet walk down memeory lane... Thank You, Flower!
    Imagine having to use real books!! hehehe
    Thank you for reading and commenting~~
  • Theresa 2012/12/11 17:55:36
    Theresa
    +3
    Great Fish Story. It reminds us even in this time of social upheaval the simple things still exist!
  • keeper Theresa 2012/12/11 20:51:19
    keeper
    +2
    It does for sure, Theresa...thank you for reading and commenting...
  • doofiegirl BTO-t- BCRA-F ~... 2012/12/11 17:37:42 (edited)
    doofiegirl  BTO-t- BCRA-F ~PWCM~
    +2
    Does the V stand for Victim, love? gigging flounder I do love your stories!
  • keeper doofieg... 2012/12/11 20:52:03
    keeper
    +2
    Yes it does, and thank you so much Doofie... you are coming with me next time!! hehehe
  • doofieg... keeper 2012/12/11 21:35:46
    doofiegirl  BTO-t- BCRA-F ~PWCM~
    +1
    murphy was wrong keep, I'm not sure I could stick that poor defenseless little fish! LOL
  • keeper doofieg... 2012/12/11 21:47:24
    keeper
    +1
    LOLOLz... I bet you could if you were hungry enough~~ (praising God while you did it!!)
  • doofieg... keeper 2012/12/11 23:53:03
    doofiegirl  BTO-t- BCRA-F ~PWCM~
    +1
    Now keeper, you Know how tenderhearted I am! Just take into consideration the way I treat those poor little libs! Never an unkind word! brooklyn bridge
  • keeper doofieg... 2012/12/12 17:44:26
    keeper
    +1
    You are just adorable, my dear!!
  • doofieg... keeper 2012/12/12 17:52:53
  • keeper doofieg... 2012/12/12 19:43:56
    keeper
    +1
    Love it, DoofieGirl!!
  • Dave**Gay for Girls** 2012/11/07 15:20:03
  • keeper Dave**G... 2012/11/07 16:08:21
    keeper
    +1
    You are right about that, Dave... and the season is right for it too~~
  • Farnsworth 2012/11/05 22:04:34
    Farnsworth
    +2
    And you didn't even fight any pirates? What a dissapointing end to yuor story....

    Glad you guys made it back safe and sound.
  • keeper Farnsworth 2012/11/06 18:19:43
    keeper
    +2
    Thank you very much~~~ hehehe
  • Adi 2012/11/05 21:29:53
    Adi
    +2
    LOL....that is what I needed....you made my day!!!
  • keeper Adi 2012/11/06 18:20:28
    keeper
    +1
    Glad you liked it and surprised you had not read it before!! ♥
    I reposted all 4 of the stories I wrote..
  • Muver 2012/11/05 19:38:53
    Muver
    +2
    Great "fish story"....and you still had a great time...you fooled Murphy...!! :D
  • keeper Muver 2012/11/05 21:23:30
    keeper
    +2
    Thank you kindly~
  • Muver keeper 2012/11/06 02:41:47
    Muver
    +2
    I feel sorry for the fish tho...and you for sure needed cell phones...:D
  • keeper Muver 2012/11/06 18:21:05
    keeper
    +2
    The only problem is that cell phones don't work up there... lol ;D
  • Muver keeper 2012/11/07 02:29:01
    Muver
    +2
    That's a bummer....Guess you would need a Satellite phone.....or something...what if someone was hurt, or having a heart attack...
  • keeper Muver 2012/11/07 16:08:58
    keeper
    +1
    Then you deal with it any way you can~~ ;o)
  • Muver keeper 2012/11/07 17:11:01
    Muver
    +1
    I guess there would be no other choice...LOL
  • keeper Muver 2012/11/07 19:43:49
    keeper
    +1
    Pre-xactly~

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