Jamaica Day 7: Deep Sea Fishing (sans catching) & Preparations for Returning Home

Amir and I went to Belize for our Honeymoon in October 2013. We didn’t have a traditional wedding registry with china, silver and home goods but rather a honeymoon registry where people could gift us a romantic dinner, snorkeling and other expeditions. One of our most infamous outings was deep sea fishing in the boat “Mojo.” We brought in a huge haul of mackerel, barracuda, yellowfin tuna, conch and more, but it wasn’t without a price. Amir had terrible seasickness for the first and only time in his life.

On our way out, full of optimism

We only had to go a half mile off shore to reach depths of 2000 feet and ultimately ended up about 6 miles off shore. The shelf drops off much sooner here than at home in Va Beach where deep sea trips take you 20-30 miles offshore.

We had four of these bad boys in at once

The local fishermen share tips and sightings of schools of fish across the radio. We listened to those reports of “Bonita” sightings and followed the birds to try and find out fish. There were at max two other charters out where we were, attempting the same maneuvers. Unfortunately for everyone NOTHING was biting. Our best catch was seaweed, and no one else had a bigger trophy.

Headed toward the bait ball

Our trip lasted 4 hours and while we didn’t get even a nibble, we did get to see 10-15 dolphin jumping waves in synchrony and a handful of flying fish take flight. We returned to Sea Glass empty handed but fulfilled.

Hide and seek

Back at Sea Glass, #1BigSister and I took advantage of our remaining pool time. We played hide and go seek. Her favorite spot was within the ring floats.

Amir gets his COVID test

At 3pm the nurse stopped by to administer our required COVID-19 tests for return back to the US. Ages 2 and up only. We are all negative.

Snails friends on the gift shop sidewalk

After establishing COVID negativity, the moms wanted to do some last month nite shopping for gifts. There’s not too much here to be honest, just a few stalls with seashell jewelry and some Bob Marley t-shirts.

Before dinner I took a last walk of the property to snap a few more photos of the flowers. When I look back at our annual photo album at each of our trips, it’s always the close ups of nature that set the tone and bring me back to that place. Vacationing is always imperfect, and this one marked by the shooting in Texas, as our oldest starts kindergarten this fall.

I used to have my guard up on vacation to not fall in love with each place, chasing a mirage of perfection, as vacations are by definition manufactured bliss. I’d remind myself how home is home, the home we know and love. But lately home doesn’t feel like home. At least not my home, and it’s possible that home was the mirage all along, the ugly truth unfolding in loss of freedom, loss of innocence, loss of life.

Amir and I often fantasize of moving abroad (both his brother and my sister live abroad with their families). We’ve researched which countries accept our medical training, which value social liberty and freedoms we hold dear. We’ve said before we’ll use a vacation as a scouting mission to find that special place. I think the pursuit is on.

~Steph

One last look at Sea Glass Villa

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