Today is the next Day One. It’s my first day of intending to haul all 50 of my traps in the water. It also turns out to be Generosity Day. Biscuit gave me a ride to the wharf. Darlene gave me a ride back. Dennis gave me a tote of bait. Jamie gave me an electric winch (unfortunately unresponsive, but nice nonetheless). What great support I've gotten from these supposedly tough fisherfolk.
I didn’t catch as much as I’d hoped. This was partly because I hurried things, hauling half the gear on three nights’ set, intead of 5 like I should have. In typical exasperating fashion, some places the bait hadn’t been touched yet, some places it was gone.
My invention, the trap flipper also began its latest demise. One bracket that holds the rig onto the gunwale let go, causing the whole thing to rack around in a crooked fashion. The crookedness gradually chewed up the other bracket, and it collapsed later on. I tied the whole business together with green nylon twine I found in the great barn cleanout of last winter. It was ok for the day, but had to basically be reassembled after each trap. The lesson after another several hours reinforcing with plywood is that: A- maritime work beats the crap out of everything. My flipper-as tough as it seemed, being heavily screwed together out of oak stock, could not stand up to commercial fishing, could not withstand my mightiness. It broke. Lesson B: when you’re making something that nobody has made before, it will evolve by showing you what breaks next. Fix this, that breaks. Now I’ve made the brackets nuke proof with sandwiched plywood, which means one thing. Some other part will break next time. Even broken all over and held together with twine, it works better than pulling the trap over the rail.
Today’s other lesson is that although fog may come on cat’s paws, it comes very quickly. It’s a blinding hot and sunny day until I’m 41 traps into my goal of 50. By 42, it was time to head in. No radar reflector, no compass. Gotta go. Cold and gray in a minute. The harbor was beautiful in the mist. I sold off and despite not finishing, despite the mechanical failure and the short set, I didn’t lose money. After my first essentially full work day, I was no more wiped than I had been after half that many.