Nkhata Bay Cont: Fishing Expedition

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February 17th 2011
Published: March 2nd 2011
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Day 3

We had a chilled morning, quick swim in the lake and then collected our clothes from town. As we were walking down the road we ran into Matt and Tim again. They were heading to Mayoka. The party started early with a free lunch of Nsima (pap), beef stew, beans and veg. We played a round or two of killer pool while chatting and having a few drinks. The party continued well into dinner and after. It was good to see Tim and Matt again - with the hilarious, classic Tim quotes. They also got along really well with Jen, Naomi, Grant, Edward and Matt - so our group is expanding.

We all went for a sunset cruise on the lake. It was so beautiful. Naomi and I pushed Tim in and then went for a swim ourselves. It felt like we were swimming right out in the middle of the lake. We went back, had some dinner and then just relaxed on the deck. The evening ended off with Jen, myself, Naomi and Matt all swimming out to the raft in the lake. Not the brightest thing to have done as there is rumours of a croc nearby that comes out at night (apparently he is vegetarian :P). It was good fun though.

Day 4

A very relaxed day after the previous night's party. Most of the day was spent in town trying to organise Tim & Matt's visas. At sunset I swam out to the raft with SA Matt and just lay on the raft in water watching sun set. It was amazing. I am consistently blown away by how beautiful things can be - the sun, the mountains and the water. Matt and I just lay there in complete silence.

For dinner there was a big BBQ with sticky chicken, kebabs, garlic bread, potatoes etc. - it was a good meal - I ate more than I probably should've but it was just so good. We had also met 2 med students from Holland who were working in a nearby village - Tessa and Joost. We invited them to join us, and offered them to join us on our fishing trip the next day that Edward (Uncle Ben) had organised us for the next day. We had to be up early so everyone started heading to bed early. Tim and I stayed up due to a "challenge yourself" dare. We ended up having drinks and chatting until gone 5am (we had to be up at 7).

Day 5

Fishing Expedition

Surprisingly I was fine the next day - even with the lack of sleep. The trip started with a quick swim while the local guys prepared the 600 hook line that we would be dropping all over the place. Laying out the line took forever. They needed to put bait on each of the 600 hooks and then slowly lead it into the water while the boat moved along at snails pace. This whole process took about 2 hours and by the time they were done we were quite far off shore. That was when the rain decided to hit. It was quite an incredible site watching the rain come towards you from across the lake. You can actually see the storm move across the water because of the disturbance on the surface. Created a suspense before it hit. Being on a rickety wooden boat in a drizzle is alright but when the storm picked up and in really started raining we all huddled under a plastic sheet and waited out the storm.

I already have an infection which didn't help matters . The rain just kept coming. The 3 local guys were steering us back to the shore slowly as it was difficult to see and navigate. The plastic sheet reeked of fish. The moment the storm let up I got into the water (for warmth and to decrease seasickness) and so did everyone else. We were right by shore but I just sat in the water on a rock. After awhile I swam to another rock and climbed up. Joost and Matt had already jumped, but Matt joined me and we jumped together. It didn't look that high until you were in the air. It took a surprisingly long time to hit the water (12m). I went again and then we headed off to go collect our fish, which meant bringing in 600 hooks and took another 2 hours. We were on the boat from 9am to gone 3pm - fishing really does take a lot of time. We watched the fish 100 hooks come up empty other than a few small fish and 1 big butterfish. Then towards the end the guy said he had something big on the line - we just reckoned a big butterfish but as it came up we could see this massive (+1m) catfish! We all got so excited and Edward was just so happy. I am so glad he finally got his fish.

At the end I think we had a total of 10 fish and one big Catfish, so an overall success. Non of us had eaten catfish before or cooked it for that matter so tomorrow night is definitely going to be an adventure. It was actually an awesome way to spend the day - I won't usually choose to go fishing but with the right people and a bit of variety it was an awesome experience.

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