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Reminiscences on fishing in yester years (II)

I love those fishing trips.

As we shared our food, the 4 of us behaved like little children, “grabbing” for the choicest morsels (not because we were ill mannered, but for fun).   On one occasion, the 3 of us chased after William who ran off with the choicest piece.  We “fought” over that last piece of fried chicken wing, on the beach.  William, the glutton, skilfully chomped on the chicken wing while managing to fight the 3 of us off!

Much to our horror, when we returned to our picnic mat, we found a couple of dogs enjoying the unattended food!  Incidents like that, taught us to “jaga” the food on the mat & never to leave them unattended.

I love those blissful moments.

After dinner, we (Amy & I) snuggled into our respective boyfriends arms, in front of the crackling fire on the beach.  We watched the tide as it, slowly, surely, gently, washed the water’s edge.  I shifted to rest my head on Richard’s shoulder for a better view of that particular, rhythmic motion of the sea water.  I soaked in the wonders of nature, the gift of God.

Amy swore that casting for prawns was not worth the cost of a net & the strenuous effort to cast for prawns.  While the rest of us went prawning, Amy tended to the fire, feeding it with more wood foraged in the vicinity.

As the tide rose, we returned to the beach.

The guys bathed with the fresh water which Richard filled in 5 litres canisters at Changi Village.  They bathed and changed into dry clothes on one side of the pick-up.  I did the same, on the other side, behind the raised picnic mat held up by Amy to provide privacy to uphold my modesty.

All of us dried and warm ourselves in front of the fire.  At the same time, the guys would thread pieces of sandworms onto the fishing hooks.  Yuck!

Simultaneously, our prawning & fishing mentor, Richard, would give a running commentary, on how to tie a hook, the size of the bait to use, in relations to the hook … blah, blah, blah.

I have no patience for the shore fishing.  However, I always try my hand in throwing the line a few times, at each fishing trip. After which, I would volunteer to brew coffee over the fire, for us.  While waiting for the water to boil, I sometimes read the book which I have brought with me.

At other times, instead of reading, I would chit chat with another group of people, who were doing family fishing there. The group was a friendly, generous, 3 generations family of Malays.  “Mak Chik” would ladle a generous amount of curry to give us, each time we met.  I still lick my lips as I recall that delicious curry.

The pungent, fragrance of the coffee summoned the gang of 3, back to the fireplace; not before they attached a bell to their lines.

After coffee, while I clean up & packed our stuff for picnic, my 3 friends would collect their rods & pooled our evening’s catch of clams, prawns & fish.

The pooled harvest would then be divided into 4 lots, for each of us to take home.  As our Malay family of friends only do fishing, we would share some clams & prawns with them, as a token of appreciation of the yummy curry.

After bidding farewell to our fishing destination, we got into the pickup to enjoy the bumpy travel once again, as it rolled & careened homeward, along the dirt road.


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