“That’s Why They Call It Fishin’ and not Catchin’”

Finally, we had time to take a much needed honeymoon/vacation. It was Valentine’s Day week and our first together. We headed south to Ft. Pierce and the Atlantic Ocean for sun, waves and fishing!
On Valentine’s Day, we headed out early to the pier right outside our room. It was the first time Roger had been fishing in almost 7 years – something that he loves to do. He had his Shakespeare fishing pole that I gave to him for Christmas. I had my bright Jewel pink, LED blinking girlie fishing pole. We stopped at Capt. Joe’s bait and tackle shop and got shrimp bait. We also got a couple of ball caps to shade our faces from the sun!
So, I had practiced casting in our backyard, so I felt ready. The only problem – I was not touching a live shrimp to place on my hook! Roger helped me out, and we casted out waiting with baited breath for the big catch!
For those of you who know me, you know I’m not a patient person. I didn’t expect to cast my hook and bait to just sit there and bob with the waves while I stared at the pole to see if it was moving. It didn’t take long for me to get bored. Roger was a bit perturbed and told me to pick up my camera and he would man my pole. So I did . . . .
I managed to bring in probably a pound of seaweed, two pieces of coral reef and I was done. Roger kept casting all the while feeding the savvy fish in the ocean with our live shrimp. And then it happened . . . Roger saw a major tug on his pole. He said, “baby, I’ve got a fish!”. I had my camera and phone ready for the big catch. About 20 feet from the pier, we saw the prize – but it wasn’t a fish but an octopus! (see photo)
The following day was almost a repeat of the first. However, I have to admit that I managed to catch something. Roger had gone back to the room for sweatshirts. I decided to surprise him and cast out and try my luck. As I flung the pole back to cast, it stopped short. I turned around only to find my hook caught on the pier rail. I frantically tried to remove the hook all the while looking around hoping no one saw me. And just as I got the hook free, Roger said, “honey, it looks like you caught a really nice rail fish”. Ha! Ha! Ha! I was mortified, but he got the biggest laugh of the day!
Well, I sent photos back and forth to my sister, mom and dad and facebook friends. In response to my coral and seaweed “catches”, my witty sister exclaimed, “well, that’s why they call it fishin’ and not catchin’”.
It was our first fishing excursion together. Afterwards, Roger threatened to never take me fishing again. We’ll see. . . I can be very relentless and persistent. The best part of the whole experience is that I was able to spend quality time with my new husband with his life-long passion – fishing!

FROM THIS DAY FORWARD, FOR BETTER, FOR WORSE

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We had planned a private wedding ceremony in Key West, FL on September 9.  On Thursday morning, August 22, 1996, we set out to get our marriage license.  We drove to the county clerk’s office in Hillsborough County in Tampa, FL.

It was a very small trailer, and there were 3 other people there besides the lady Deputy Clerk.  While we filled out the paperwork, the clerk went to help the other 3.  She came back, asked for the necessary identification, reviewed the license application.  Then, totally unexpected, she smiled and asked “do you want to get married now?”.  We looked at each other dumbfounded, and then all of a sudden we both said “yes”.

She went to the back of the office, grabbed some silk flowers for me to hold.  She read the marriage vows to us.  When she pronounced us “man and wife”, applause and cheers erupted from the three strangers.

I am definitely NOT a spur-of-the-moment kind of person.  And we certainly weren’t dressed for a wedding moment!  Both of us had red pullover shirts and jeans . . . not the “fancy pants” I’m usually wearing.  We had no rings to exchange.  Our simple, modest real wedding day August 22, 1996 was in a little trailer performed by a Deputy Clerk.

Our life has been anything but simple and mundane and not without a lot of bumps and bruises.  Many tears have been shed – some happy, some heart-wrenching – but we’ve managed to survive all of life’s lemons.  Mostly, we laugh, we’re inseparable, and we always remember to “Bea Positive”.  So “from that day forward, lawfully wedded husband and wife, for better or for worse, for richer or poorer, in sickness and health, until death do us part.”. 

So to my partner, my BFF, my soul mate, I say thanks for “Bea-ing” with me all these years and for “Bea-ing” the inspiration behind “Bea Positive”.

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