Teamwork at sea: everybody makes mistakes. It's how you handle them that counts.
So my wife Jiggy and I are drift fishing the reef off of Boca Raton in our center console, Gettin' Jiggy. After a kingfish on the kite bait and a few bonitos on the flat lines, Jiggy wants to concentrate on catching mutton snapper. After a couple of shorts, she gets a keeper. After several more drifts and a few more shorts she gets another legal fish, but not the big one she was hoping for. On what we call our last drift, in 72 feet of water, she finally hooks up with a solid fish that's bending her rod to her delight.
For some odd reason she wasn't wearing her usual fishing Crocs and suddenly she slips and falls forward to the gunwale. With the force of her forearms hitting the gunwale, out pops the rod.
We look at each other in disbelief and by the time the thought of jumping in after my Talica II reel and X Generation custom rod goes through our heads, it's too late ... the rod is sunk.
But we did think to mark the spot on our GPS.
So instead of getting mad at Jiggy I calmly stated that she owes me $1,000 to replace the rod and reel. She shrugged that idea off and was more upset about losing the fish! Then she gets an idea to call a dive boat that is nearby. After getting Scubatyme III on the radio, we get an agreement from the captain for him to send his divemaster down at our spot for a search-and-rescue mission after his last dive.
After waiting for about 45 minutes, the dive boat drops a diver in at our marked spot. About 10 minutes later the diver emerges with our rod and reel! The fish was gone and that would have made an even better story if he had brought the fish up, but we were happy to get our rod and reel back. We thanked the captain and the diver and gave them a $100 reward. And now Jiggy only owes me $100 and the cost of the reel service!