Friday, August 24, 2018

The Best Fish Dinner Ever!

When we travel, we mostly eat at home, but we also like to try local restaurants. Last night, we had a wonderful dinner at a local seafood place in Deltona, Fla.--A&A Crab House. We found the restaurant on Local Flavor ($15 for $30 worth of food). The garlic crabs, accompanied by garlic rice, were delightfully messy and tasty. We were not disappointed.

As good as last night's dinner was, however, tonight's was better. Why? Because we at fish we caught! Yes, at long last, we caught something!

We have gone fishing every day this week (except Monday). Today we went to Canaveral National Seashore, south of New Smyrna Beach. Yesterday an older couple who fish every day told us about the National Seashore. They guaranteed we would catch something, and we did.

Fishing is available either at the seashore itself (beach area) or in Mosquito Lagoon. We chose the latter to dip our lines.

It did not take long to figure out how Mosquito Lagoon got its name. Within seconds of exiting the car, we were swarmed by mosquitoes. We couldn't apply repellent fast enough. Fortunately, however, the 'squiters stayed in the wooded area, away from the actual lagoon.

There were a couple of fishing piers available; we shared one with a young couple. I cast my line, and within a few minutes I had a bite! Unfortunately, it was just a pin fish. Generally, we keep any fish that is big enough to provide a fillet. Pin fish, though, are not that tasty, we have learned, and this one was small, so back into the lagoon it went.

While we were fishing, we were entertained by the local fauna: A pod (herd?) of manatees made their way into our fishing area. The first one was a mother...accompanied by a baby! Then we spied another, possibly the father. And later yet, another adult joined the group. They stayed in the area, apparently feasting on the underwater salad bowl just off shore.
Look closely at the "shadow" in the back of the middle post.
It is actually a mother manatee with her baby. Alas, it is difficult to catch sight of them on the surface.
 Also while we were fishing, we saw several dolphins swim by. Normally, we like dolphins, but they tend to scare away the fish. After all, they are fishing for themselves.

Finally, we saw a rare sight--a big fish chasing a smaller one! They were close to the surface and we could see the chase.

All the while that the local marine life was entertaining us, we continued feeding the fish. I finally caught a catfish worth keeping. It took Jim a while, but he finally caught a fish that may have been a mangrove snapper. It was small, but we kept it.

Those two fish would not have made a meal, but the young man we were fishing with caught a number of catfish. Three were "keeper" size, but he did not want them. So, our meager catch was supplemented with the castoffs from this generous young fisherman.
Jim dutifully cleaned all of our fish, a messy but necessary prelude to a good fish dinner.

Our dinner was simple, but it was delicious--a bowl of homemade navy bean soup, fried fish, and peas. Eskimo pies for dessert. Life is good.

Tomorrow, it is home again.

We had a great vacation.

Until later,

Your Reluctant RoVer,
Linda

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