Fishing and traveling go hand in hand. Well, most of the time. My recent trip to the Florida Keys was not one of those times. Getting to Marathon was a bit of a marathon.
Every spring, tarpon begin their migration from the Gulf of Mexico to the Atlantic Ocean. This requires them to pass through the Florida Keys. In May, great numbers of tarpon congregate in the deeper channels that connect the Gulf of Mexico and Atlantic Ocean. This phenomenon has controlled my fishing calendar for many years. Thus, my annual May pilgrimage to the Florida Keys.
With this being my first pandemic fishing trip, I expected a few issues. As it turns out, a few was wishful thinking.
Issue number one: Book your flight out on the right day AND look at your ticket. Brody, the amazing fish finding and stock trading dog, typically handles fishing trip logistics. Since I was ditching him on this trip, I did it myself.
Issue number two: When you fly on the wrong day, you get off schedule with your charter guide. This did allow me to check an item off my bucket list. Paying a tarpon guide to go fishing without me. The guide had a great time and caught several big tarpon. He said sending me pictures would just be cruel. I made a mental note to quit sending Brody fish pictures when he is not fishing with me.
Issue number three: Cigars and dark rum. I don’t smoke and am usually a moderate drinker. This trip, I broke with tradition. Boredom can do strange things to the traveling angler.
On this trip, I did not catch a single fish. My big haul was a huge hangover. Yes. Ash tray mouth? Yes. Tarpon? Not so much.
While pondering my fate in a hammock beneath some palm trees, it occurred to me that this is what most people do on vacation. So, I took a picture of the palms and ordered another dark rum. As it turns out, I had a great time!