Alone – well sort of! Sal has gone down to NSW for a week or so for her Grandmother’s 90th, Kai is in Darwin for 2 weeks at trade school and Dave is over in Thailand getting some work on his teeth. I basically moved onto the boat last Wednesday, figuring I may as well be alone on the water as anywhere else! My solitude was interrupted by a surprise visit from my friend Suresh who is a ENT surgeon in Darwin and he was over in Gove doing some operations at our hospital. He ended up having a day off at the end of his week so he came out to the yacht and we spent the afternoon out in the tinny fishing, and then enjoyed sunset drinks on the boat before heading into the boat club for dinner. It was great to catch up and hopefully he will be back over before too long.
Friday I spent the day out in the tinny chasing Mackerel, went all the way out to Last Chance Shoal (about 20nm) and got nothing, cut back across to Mack Shoal…another 15nm….and got nothing, had a last troll over Bonner Shoal, only 7nm from home – and got one small mackerel! Better than nothing I guess.
Saturday I decided it was about time to see if I can sail Lumiel on my own, it’s not really set up for single handed sailing but I figure it should be possible. I managed to get off the mooring and sailing easily enough, so I thought I may as well make a weekend of it and sail up to Truant island (about 36nm North of here). It was a great day for sailing, about 15k-18k of Easterly wind so it was a broad reach all the way.
At some point I looked back to check the mackerel lines I was trolling and saw what I assumed was a massive mackerel skipping over the tops of the waves as I skull dragged it along at about 8k! By the time I got it to the. back of the boat I realised it was actually a billfish, turned out to be a small black marlin!! It’s the first one I have ever caught up here and totally unexpected on a hard bodied mackerel lure.
Anyway, it’s safely filleted and in the freezer now! I had some fresh for dinner, made marlin bites on a bed of twice cooked potato with onion & garlic all cooked in wine and butter. I mixed the chopped up marlin liver in with the potato & onion. It was very tasty!
The anchorage was a little bit rolly with the Easterly swell wrapping around the top of Truant, but not uncomfortable in the Cat, after a pleasant night I pulled anchor Sunday morning and had a fast if uneventful sail home!
This happened the weekend before, I got a text from Kai after he arrived in Darwin, said he was cooking breakfast for Ted & Mouse in Darwin, and he wanted to know how long to poach eggs for. I asked him what he was cooking and he nonchalantly told me he was knocking up Eggs Benedict for them! I gave him some quick tips for making the Hollandaise sauce, but it was by no means a recipe and it’s the first time he has made it! To say I was impressed would be an understatement, one very proud dad.