Monday, June 6, 2005

Jack's Grouper

I was sitting here this morning thinking about the days when I was still a Producer/Director and I remembered an old associate and friend of mine by the name of Jack Cosgrove. Jack was a cinematographer and an excellent audio technician as well. Any time I needed film shot for a client instead of videotape, I would call on Jack first.

Jack and I teamed up on many projects during my stint in the Tampa Bay, Florida area. Like myself, Jack loved the water and we shared a passion for fishing. Shortly after acquiring "Halcyon," I asked Jack to come down to Bahia Beach Marina in Ruskin, Florida so I could show her off to him. Ruskin is about twenty minutes south of Tampa on the Tampa side of Tampa Bay. I did a little rummaging and found some PICS that were taken that day.

Jack arrived and I gave him the tour of "Halcyon." I had mentioned fishing over the phone as an added attraction to get Jack to make the drive down. I could see his puzzlement as he asked if we were still going to take her out and wet a line that day.

You see, "Halcyon" was not made for fishing. It was a comfortable boat made to live on and was quite stately. No one would ever confuse her with a fishing vessel of any kind even though I had added rod holders to her stern on both sides. I fired up the twin 453 Detroit Diesel engines and told Jack to come aboard, as we were about to cast off.

In those days, you had to go out into the Gulf of Mexico many miles to hit a reef or rock outcropping that held what I had promised Jack we were going to catch. We were in search of the coveted grouper. I had learned a secret not many knew about and told Jack we were going to fish for grouper in the bay. He said he was just glad to be going along on a boat ride. He didn’t believe me that you could catch them there. On the way out, dolphin swimming through our wake entertained us.

We started trolling for the grouper on the edges of the ship’s channel while we were still in sight of the marina. I was up on the upper steering station; Jack was down on the deck in the stern watching the lines. Jack thought he was just going to have a nice ride and that was all, so he pulled out a folding chair and started to get comfortable. That's when it hit.

Well, Jack was so surprised that he nearly fell overboard getting out of that chair and to the bent rod. He started shouting to me and I slowed the boat down and got her into neutral while he fought the fish. As you can see from the picture, Jack landed the grouper and became an instant believer.

We spent the day leisurely plying Tampa Bay and came home with all the fish we needed. This is the sunset we enjoyed as we made it back to the marina.

52 comments:

judithheartsong said...

Yea Jack and Sam....... a whale of a tale, and photos to prove it. I LOVE the gulf. judi

rap4143 said...

Sam great pictures and story.  I love the beach and ocean.
Betty

billandnae said...

What a great story...good ting you didn't take me, I would have puked!

chatzeekay said...

love the pics sorry have not been here

judypearllove said...

GREAT STORY AND THE WAY YOU TOLD IT AND PUT THE PICTURES IN ARE AWESOME. I'VE BEEN OUT FISHING ON A FRIENDS BOAT SORTA LIKE THAT AND A FISHING TOUR BOAT IN MIAMI WE HAD A BLAST. THERE'S NOTHIING LIke IT. THANKS FOR THE MEMORIES PRESSED BETWEEN THE PAGES OF MY MIND.

sieblonde said...

Makes me miss the ocean more than I already do!  A great story.  ~Sie

ondinemonet said...

Sam

I enjoyed this entry, and the photos very much. :) What a story! There is nothing quite like the water is there? Ahhh

Always, Carly :)

carly0042 said...

Hi Sam you sure do lead an interesting life. I have always wanted to try fishing just don't know the right people or live in the right area I guess. Anyway, thanks for the note at my journal and yes my journal is shut down for now anyway. I have been writing in it for just over a year and to tell you the truth I really don't have much to say at this time. There is just nothing that interesting going on in my life and anything that is unpleasent I just don't feel like writing about. Any how wants to read a lot of ramblings about nothing? I will still check in with yours from time to time thanks.
Carlette

carly0042 said...

Hi Sam you sure do lead an interesting life. I have always wanted to try fishing just don't know the right people or live in the right area I guess. Anyway, thanks for the note at my journal and yes my journal is shut down for now anyway. I have been writing in it for just over a year and to tell you the truth I really don't have much to say at this time. There is just nothing that interesting going on in my life and anything that is unpleasent I just don't feel like writing about. Any how wants to read a lot of ramblings about nothing? I will still check in with yours from time to time thanks.
Carlette

carly0042 said...

Hi Sam you sure do lead an interesting life. I have always wanted to try fishing just don't know the right people or live in the right area I guess. Anyway, thanks for the note at my journal and yes my journal is shut down for now anyway. I have been writing in it for just over a year and to tell you the truth I really don't have much to say at this time. There is just nothing that interesting going on in my life and anything that is unpleasent I just don't feel like writing about. Any how wants to read a lot of ramblings about nothing? I will still check in with yours from time to time thanks.
Carlette

ryanagi said...

Of course the BIG question that still remains unanswered...how did it TASTE?? LOL

robinngabster said...

Sam, just this morning I was wondering when you would post another entry! I must have been sending you mental hints. Great story, bet it was even better in person!!!

rivercitygirl1 said...

Wow!  Awesome story Sam.  Grouper is one of my favourite type of fish.
Tami
http://journals.aol.com/rivercitygirl1/PicturePages

indigosunmoon said...

Sam,
I absolutely loved this story, and the photos
are awesome!!!!
Lovish!
Connie

childebrand1968 said...

A great tale, indeed, Sam!  I'm glad I get to live my ocean life vicariously here :)

The pictures are awesome and make it perfect!  Glad you landed some fish~were they all that big? Made for great eating, anyway, I'm sure....

Seems the sunset ended that perfect day, perfectly  :)

Cat

pixiedustnme said...

Such a way with words, as always thanx for sharing :-)

samnsmile5 said...

Love your pictures!  I love to watch the dolphins swim ahead of the boats.  
Thanks for the story.  
Michele

bosoxblue6993w said...

what an evocative, entertaining and beautifully-written entry.    kudos.

jcole16757 said...

Love reading your stories and always enjoy your pics!

museing said...

What a great story! Just love your writting...feel as though i was there....The pics are Great&jackie Boy did look Happy! Have a great day!D

yakima127 said...

WOW!!!  JAE

louie0768 said...

When I was 3 months pregnant with our first child, hubby and I took a week vacation to Florida. We decided to go deep sea fishing.

We were told that we were going to go fishing for Grouper, and I LOVE fishing so was very excited to experience fishing on the ocean. We watched the dolphins play in the wake next to the boat, it was just a great trip out to the fishing spot.

Once we got out there, the boat anchored and the waves were rocking us like an oversized rocking chair. You can bet what happened, I got sick once they pulled out the squid. I was able to put a line out and actually had a fish of some kind but I had to leave to run down to the bathroom to get sick. I kept trying to attempt to tell myself that I wasn't going to get sick but in the end, I spent 45 minutes of the hour long fishing excursion in the bathroom.

Needless to say, I never did get to see what a grouper looked like.

I just love to read your tales, they bring to life a different world that I love. I have traveled a lot but I have to say that the ocean ventures were always some of the most peaceful and at the same time exciting.

labdancer51 said...

Great photos, that sunset is glorious!  :-)

Sandra x

madcobug said...

Great story and great pictures. What a big grouper. I have never been deep sea fishing but I love the fresh water fishing around here. Helen

karensull12 said...

Wow...cool story.  Love the boat!

madcobug said...

P.S. love your Canadian Penny Story. Helen

blondepennierae said...

I've been to Florida and seen the beautiful sunset, but I have never been deep sea fishing.  Looks as if I have missed something.  I do love to fresh water fish though.  Sometime I'll tell the story about going fishing with the men and being the only one that caught any fish.  Beautiful entry Sam, Pennie

nyuknyukpik2 said...

WOW--great pics and a great story!
I enjoy reading your journal a whole bunch.

onemoretina said...

Sam...sounds like a wonderful day with a great friend.  That pic of the sunset is beautiful.  There is nothing that compares to a sunset on the water.    Tina

stupidsheetguy said...

WOW! Bahia Beach...went there a few times when I was married. Got a "Ruskin Florida" beer mug here somewhere, complete with the tomato emblazoned on it. I'll have to dig it up!

Thanks for a great entry! I need to go fishing!

Jimmy

cneinhorn said...

love the fishing tales and photos, and of coarse, why wouldn't I?  such a nice journal to visit  :-)

~ www.jerseygirljournal.com

jtuwliens said...

This entry is fabulous!  Growing up, I used to dock at this very marina in Ruskin, fish in those waters, and watch the sunset every evening from that vantage point.  Aaahhhhh...a walk down memory lane for me.  Thanks for reminding me how beautiful it is and how much I miss it.
Best,
Judith
http://journals.aol.com/jtuwliens/MirrorMirrorontheWall

mcjerseygiri said...

What a magnificent sunset. The grouper looks rather large to me. My uncle used to live on Merritt Island. He had a boat and took us fishing a few times. That was about forty years ago. Haven't had very good fish since those days. Nelle

csandhollow said...

Pat has told me about how much fun it is to catch them.

fitzzer said...

Great entry. Just tried some fresh FL grouper for the first time - DE-LISH!
I want to thank you for leaving such a nice comment about my Uncles work with Mad Magazine. Thx! Keep smilin ~ Lori

sonensmilinmon said...

This entry is one of those that makes you smile - I was sitting here trying to imagine Jack getting all comfy and expecting nothing more than to relax then that grouper! :-)  Sounds like a kind of day I'd enjoy myself.

Monica
http://journals.aol.com/photographybymon/Mamarazzi/
http://journals.aol.com/sonensmilinmon/SmilinMonsAdventures/

heartsingr said...

I always love fish stories.  :-)

~Laurie

jen73169 said...

What a beautiful sunset!! Wish I was there now... :)
Jennifer

coy1234787 said...

    Oh, how I love fish tales!
    I do believe I must have been a pirate or at least
a fisherman in another lifetime. I love the ocean,
I love the shore but mostly I love being out at sea
on a boat.
    Reading your story ... I can almost feel the wind
in my hair, the sun on my face, and taste the salt in
the air, thanks Sam!
              *** Coy ***

cyndygee said...


What a fun and entertaining tale!  Thanks for sharing.

http://journals.aol.com/cyndygee/TheRealWorldofcyndygee

lurkynat said...

cool! :) glad you had so much fun!
n

demandnlilchit said...

Oh I'm so jealous of your boat life I could just spit! lol But then again Momma always said it wasn't polite for a lady to spit! lol It's my first visit to your journal and now I'm kicking myself for not stopping by sooner, fantastic story telling!I'm off to read more!
Kimberleigh

auburndawn said...

As always, I love your tales of "adventure". Your stories always bring to me the feel of sand beneath my feet, the smell of slat in the air, the way the breeze feels, and so much more.  How lucky you are to love the life you lead..  and how lucky we are to share in it!
Dawn
http://journals.aol.com/auburndawn/DawnsDrivel/entries

debbted said...

Wow~I found your journal through Pearl's (rancher). I love the water too, but haven't fished since I was a kid. I love to read about people who are really doing what they love. Glad you are. I moved so my journal is not updated since April, but you can view it at SassyDee50 on Hometown. :-) Sassy

justaname4me2 said...

What a great adventure! Grouper can be one BIG old fish, someday............I'm going to try fishing for them :o)
Rebecca

jevanslink said...

Producer/Direcor -- Boat/Marina/Guy.  It's a topping. It's a floor wax.  How many things can one man do?  Mrs. L

mumma4evr said...

I am not even sure who I found your journla but I am glad i did!!!  I am a Navy vet , I worked on a tug boat, and small lnading craft!  YOur journals have brought back some wonderful memories!!!!
Beckyhttp://journals.aol.com/mumma4evr/Mumma4evrslifeorlackthereof

csandhollow said...

Been missing you hun.

jtuwliens said...

It's been very quiet in this here neighborhood lately.  You must be off on another adventure.  Looking forward to your next entry!
Best,
Judith
http://journals.aol.com/jtuwliens/MirrorMirrorontheWall

southernmush said...

Hello...I decided to drop by your journal. Permission to come aboard ??? Thank you here I am. I really like your journal and the pictures of your boat its beautiful. I have never been down to Tampa Bay, Florida. I have been to Panama City Beach, Florida with my parents its nice down there. I bet its wonderful being out on the water. I miss visiting Florida. We don't see any dolphins when we get out to Florida that would be nice to see. The sunset is amazing it really is. It must be nice to get on the water as much as you do. You have me longing to get back to Florida. Thanks for your journal. I posted a link to your journal on my journal if you don't mind. Thanks again.

poppypress said...

I had such a fabulous time when we went fishing in Florida last year.  Sadly all  my groupers had to be thrown back as they were too small!
http://journals.aol.co.uk/poppypress/DiaryofaPRGirl/

poppypress said...

I had such a fabulous time when we went fishing in Florida last year.  Sadly all  my groupers had to be thrown back as they were too small!
http://journals.aol.co.uk/poppypress/DiaryofaPRGirl/