Dinner and a Show

By Michael Landress:

Briskly driven by warm sea breezes, we drifted in 26-fathoms—three grizzled and oft impatient anglers awaiting a bite. Biker Brad and I chartered Capt. Chris Le-Mieux and his 27-foot Conch Cruiser out of Boynton Beach with expectations of catching summer dolphin.

Joggling in 2-foot seas, Chris set the lines. After a few minutes, we noticed the spinning rod baited with a lively threadfin at the transom presenting a tad odd. The monofilament was loosely wrapped around the reel’s handle and bail. The line was straight down from the rod tip and disappeared beneath the Conch Cruiser. Chris seized the rod and quickly untangled the quandary then began a feverish retrieval of slack line.

A tenacious, girly Mahi gobbled the jittery herring then torpedoed toward the vessel. I reached for the camera in an effort to capture images of her aerial assault for freedom, but missed the opportunity because Chris forced the straining rod in my face barking, “REEL . . . REEL . . . REEL!”

We watched in awe as the flailing dolphin rocketed through the air twisting and turning with great energy. Perhaps, the Mahi is the prettiest fish in the world’s oceans. The brilliant harlequin green and cyber yellow of its lit skin, embellished with ultramarine specks in contrast with blue water, is spectacular.

Having missed two epic jumps, I couldn’t resist the temptation. I passed the rod to Brad so I could focus on capturing the final flurry of vaults with a camera. But, as quickly as the acrobatic breaches had begun, they ceased.

The worn dolphin laggardly cruised near the surface. Her brilliant color quickly faded as she succumbed to a well-placed, razor sharp gaff. Wild-eyed and grinning from ear to ear like yellow cartoon sponges, we extended our gratitude for the show by welcoming her aboard for a dinner engagement.

Dinner and a show is how we roll!

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