Last week I got a text from cornholio inviting me out for what I thought would be a day on the delta.
He’s back to working full time now and can only make it out on weekends, so we tentatively planned a Saturday outing, depending on the weather.
He contacted me on Friday and told me where he wanted to meet, and it wasn’t until I Googled the spot that I realized we weren’t going bass fishing. We were going crabbing.
At 3:15 on Saturday morning my wife nudged me awake, and after getting dressed and loading the truck I hit the road.
Roughly three miles out from our designated meeting place I started seeing skunks cavorting on the side of the road. Lots of them. One of these skunk decided that the highway I was traveling on had been put there for his use. This proved unfortunate. For both of us.
I arrived at the boat launch at 5:30 AM and immediately fired up a cigar, cracked a beer, and took a walk down the pier and away from my truck.
The air was still, and with sunrise still well beyond the horizon I stood on the edge of the continent and let the vastness of a black Pacific Ocean put me in my proper place.
Not long afterwards I heard the rumble of an engine and the rattle of a trailer, and so I walked back to the cooler and cracked two more beers: one for me, and one for cornholio.
I hadn’t seen him since November, so we spent the next thirty minutes catching up.
The crabs could wait.
It was still dark when we launched the boat, and out on the water we wore headlamps while baiting the pots with a combination of Asian market chicken and frozen squid.
After dropping the last trap, we motored back and hauled up the first.
Crab season opens in November, and the area we were fishing gets a lot of pressure, so I wasn’t optimistic about pulling anything up other than the bait, but cornholio knows this area well. He was very specific about where we dropped the pots, and it made all the difference in our success rate.
We quickly had twelve in the well, after which he said, “Time for breakfast. How about some egg rolls?”
I’ve been eating egg rolls all my life, in more restaurants than I can count, and I can say with all certainty that cornholio makes the best goddamn egg rolls I’ve ever tasted.
We motored in and tied up the boat. Cornholio set up a gas grill on his tailgate and moments later he was frying up egg rolls.
The once empty parking lot was now nearly full of trucks and trailers, and a skinny young guy walked by and asked us how we were doing.
“We picked up a couple,” cornholio replied. “You want an egg roll?”
The guy was about to come over and take one but then stopped and said, “I can’t. My girlfriend and I are on the Keto diet.”
“What the fuck is that?”
“No carbs. No…. beer.”
I looked at him, shook my head and said, “Sucks to be you.”
Then I cracked a beer and stuffed another egg roll in my face and watched the guy walk away. Sad.
When I could eat no more, we went back out and started pulling pots. We quickly had our limit, so we hauled all the pots back up onto the boat, removed all the bait, and headed in.
Once the boat was on the trailer I set up my stove and cooked up an early lunch. After that we spent the next couple of hours drinking beers, smoking cigars, and taking in the remainder of a beautiful morning.
I always enjoy spending time with Cornholio, and before heading home we made plans to fish again next month.
Below are a few photos.