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Charm - Day 10 - birds and pirates

I thought the big news today was going to be the appearance of a tiny but vicious pirate. Instead, it's about the bird that got away.

After doing our cleaning chores (Sundays are cleaning days on Charm), we were all taking a break. After two days of eating Cobin's fudge, I decided I'd better do a workout of some sort. I was so sweaty afterwards that I decided to try dragging in the water like the kids. Joe lowered me in, took a few photos, then went back to put away the camera. I was happily dragging in the delightfully cool water when I heard him shouting, "No, no!"

I noticed a bird that Joe had pointed out earlier. It had been circling the boat with interest and was now concentrating on the area behind the boat. We have been dragging fishing lines for days, with no luck, and I remembered that Joe had switched lures. My first thought was that we'd finally caught something and that the bird was trying to steal it. But Joe said, "No - it's trying to get our lure."

I didn't realize what this meant for the bird but it was the most interesting thing that had happened in a while so I climbed out of the water and quickly untied myself. The activity level at the back of the boat was increasing and I caught a glimpse of the bird struggling in the water. It was caught on the lure!

I told the kids to get outside to see what we had caught and ran to grab my camera. Joe and Kent had pulled the line in, with the bird attached. It was flapping around on the transom. I tried to maneuver to get a photo (unsuccessfully) and, with another flap of its wings, the bird was free and in the water. As it flew off, I noticed a larger-than-our-lure sized fish still on the transom. "Did we catch something?" I asked Joe. "No - the fish regurgitated that. It's a flying fish."

I don't know what the rules are but I think we can claim it as our first fish caught. Technically, the fish was on the line - there was just a bird surrounding it. No one was particularly interested in eating our partially digested catch so Joe pushed it back in and now has another smelly body part. We don't know why but flying fish have a very strong, very unpleasant odor.

Tully was upset that she didn't get to pet the bird but the rest of us were just grateful that there wasn't an ugly hook-removal scene.

In produce news, I saw Tim furtively taking the grapes out of the fruit net. "What are you doing with the grapes?" I asked. "Um . . . I was just moving them to the fridge so they'll stay fresher longer." Later he suggested we cut the frog skin melon and put it in the fridge as well. They were good ideas, unless they were diversionary tactics to fill the fridge with so much produce that we lose track of what's in there . . . We did lose an orange to mold today. Tim gave it a proper burial at sea. Perhaps he really does have the health of the entire boat in mind, but I have my doubts.

Kent kept us in good spirits with his excellent music, especially the boat's new favorite band, Pink Martini.

Another day gone, a few more miles behind us, and the end, while not in sight or even on the horizon, is appearing on the chart plotter without too much panning.

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