Making friends


Some people might prefer to make friends in foreign lands with people from their own countries, or similar cultures. Myself, I want to make friends with the locals, including when it comes to fishing.

I have been in Hua Hin for more than a month and fishing on the beach at the end of each day for most of those days. No luck so far but I have been trying to tap the expertise of a local who also fishes on the beach. He and I are the only two people fishing a half-mile stretch of beach fronting the main area of the city. That might suggest that we are both tilting at windmills but he says he is catching fish, although not that many.

Until now, our interaction has been limited, with me asking stuff like how his end tackle is set up, how far he goes out to cast, and what he is catching. He likes to draw pictures of the fish he is after, in full size, in the sand. Appears to be snake fish and catfish. He told me that the fishing would improve in February. It is February. He says he has only caught two fish this month, a 20-pound sting ray and a 10-pound catfish.

Usually, we fish about 100 meters apart, with him often walking the beach in search of bait. He uses a 6-meter cast net that does not have a rope pulley retrieve that gathers the bait as is done in Florida. I may order one soon from Amazon, but it is expensive to ship here and will take some time in the mail.

He has taken to sharing his bait with me, since I have no way of catching my own. Instead, I purchase small fish at the market and use as cut bait.

Yesterday, I took a couple of pictures of him with his rod. Today, I had 8×10 color prints made (55 baht -$1.50). They were a hit. I also showed him a picture of me with a 25-pound drum I caught on Turtle Beach, Sarasota, that impressed him.

He showed the pictures to a friend standing there and then walked about 100 yards to show them to another friend who was cast netting. Then he set up his two poles right next to mine, instead of 100 yards away. We had some limited conversation and later he re-baited my hook with his interpretation of how the cut bait should be presented.

We fished past sundown and caught nothing. But it didn’t mater.fishing buddy2

About 2bagsandapack

Lifetime journalist, author, magazine editor and publisher, now semi-retired and traveling the world. My plan, after living in Costa Rica for 14 months, was to visit a new country in southern Europe every three months to experience the culture and the challenge of adapting to a new environment, while on a fixed income. That plan was sidetracked when I was offered a job in Indonesia, providing an opportunity to explore Asia. Indonesia lasted for a 4 wonderful years but I have now moved on to Hua Hin, Thailand.
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