Saturday, July 26, 2008

Old Walleye

Tale tales and true. Many stories have been recounted about “OLD WALL EYE”, he lived in real memory, and he was not a figment of too much ‘rum and coffee’. Our ‘friend’ lives out from Brunswick Heads, he has one good eye.

This “Bushy”, read ‘watery’ yarn comes from a personal experience. This must make me 121 years old. Also read; he for she, she for he?

OLD WALL EYE, he was big and brown, he had a huge set of teeth and he terrified us. A dog? A bull? no a bloody great shark that’s what old wall eye was. He lived near Brunswick Heads N.S.W.; He lived in deep water and was notorious amongst the trawler men and the boaties. He wrecked so many prawn nets and ‘took’ so many fish, always distinguished by his one white eye, can’t remember which was the good eye, it may have been his starboard one.

He was a legend, he was not a figment of some bodies imagination. Ask any fisherman from up here and they will relate a story of this huge BRONZE WHALER. My mate John and myself can tell you first hand of our encounter with the toothy creature from the deep.

John owned a fiberglass bond wood boat, it was distinguished by the name ‘GOTCHA’. When the Bar Mouth was flat as a ‘night carters hat’, we would down tools and head out for few hours of fishing. Mostly we fish the local reef and if conditions allowed head for the 38’s. So here we are; anchored and down goes the 70lb lines with ‘pillies’ for bait, got some bites and landed some nice Schnapper, John suggests he has caught Australia, you fisher persons will relate to hooking the bottom. The only option is to keep hauling in until the hook lets go or the line breaks. For some time John hauls away but still the weight remains on the line. We both know something big has been hooked up, sharks mostly take a run and break you off, this was to be an exception. SO, what was this dead weight, it was not long before the question was answered.

Out of the murky deep an apparition of huge proportions becomes very evident, John has hauled to the surface “The Legend”, the, “walled eyed monster”. Two blokes with normally complacent personalities are incredulous at the size of this fish, GOTCHA is 18 feet long, the monster is nearly as long, it quietly surveys us, we survey it and a stand off is happening. The rest of the narrative will be a blur; a knife is produced, the line is cut, the motor started, the anchor is retrieved and we get to buggery out of there. WE have had our encounter with ‘OLD WALL EYE’ AND SURVIVED!
This chronicle is mentioned else where on the WWW, more ‘at length’ narratives? ( , described as JOHN D. FARLEY, SUPERBLOG.

He was big and mean he was brown, teeth resplendent white, some will imagine an animal that barks.
Well I can tell that, he was all that but not the Junkyard Dog, he’s marine, and from the 38’s this bugger harks and rules the ocean oh supreme.

Brunswick Heads, the “Rocky Boardwalk South” will be where this recount emanates.
It’s about me mate Johnnie Mckeag and me, oh and ‘GOTCHA’, you guys, the story will desalinates?

John and me check the bar this day, it’s like a Night Carters Hat, and that’s flat.
So down go’s tools, paint brushes and stuff, the 38’s is where were at.
The faithful ‘GOTCHA’, she’s bond wood,18 foot, fiberglass clad and pride of all the fleet.
She’s pullin’ at the bridle as the dreaded break walls we meet and breach.

With rods and lines and smelly bait, me mate and our trusty steed.
Head E NOR EAST to the ‘horror zone’, just to have a good day out, brings home to the folks a wholesome feed, yeah fish for tea, grilled for me, and, it must be your next shout.

30 minutes and we are there dropping down the anchor to our fishing spot of choice.

The mighty ocean, she’s quite, she’s tranquil and a wonderful place to be ‘hooked up’.
Bait up, dropp down, get set, get bites land some fish, now get ready for a story that johnfarls hasn’t cooked up.

Mckeag sais “ hey farls I think I’ve the bottom, bugger, have to break of the line”.
So he hauls and hauls on the 70 pound fishing twine, it comes up ever so slow, and then it dawns, something big is coming up from way way down the mine.

The line, she won’t break,15 minutes pass and then some more I feel sure.
What is this thing me mates hooked up, “keep pullin’ mate”, got to see this thing, curiosity found, that will be the cure.
“Remora, sucker fish”, we both exclaims in time, up they come, the penny drops lets cut of the bloody line.

But now the reason for our wonder majestically appears, brown and huge it enters our line of sight.
It surfaces on the starboard side then slowly moves to port, it’s the legend
Just a bronze whaler,16 foot long, it has a head like a Mini-Minor, bloody hell lets get out here, lets take flight.

Frantic action, panic, traumatic reaction, over reaction, crap has hit the fan, cut the line, start the motor, get up the anchor, don’t wait for this buggers might.
All these actions take place in a blur, back to the depths this apparition descends.
WE have had our encounter with OLD WALL EYE, we lived, but this not where the story ends.
WE clean the boat from you know what, and what do you think we find?
Bloody ‘dry rot’, that’s wot, see the dilemma? Old WALL EYE almost had our be-hind.

© john d Farley 2008
John D. Farley

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