Capt Mike has been reporting a great catch in Estero Bay Fort Myers beach, with sheepshead, spanish mackerel, and redfish. He has also been catching jacks and pompano- the jewel of the sea! Delish. Yesterday, I met Capt Mike up at his boat after his charter and he had a bag of mackerel fillets that his customers decided not to keep all of. I’m talking what felt like 6 lbs of fish, and Mike asks if I want this for dinner. So as usual I said let’s think about, because, honestly I was too tired to prepare anything for dinner. As I am cleaning the boat, a super nice older gentlemen with twinkling eyes, and this awesome Italian accent (his name is Joe he says), and his son approach asking general questions, and then ask if we ever sell our catch. So Mike offers him the bag of fillets for free! They were thrilled and so was I because that meant I was off the hook for preparing dinner! Yay! They felt bad because they had nothing to offer in return even though we were wanting nothing for the fish. So they leave, and I am already thinking about where I want to go out for dinner. 13 minutes later, the two Italians show back up with a bottle of wine, Cabernet in fact, one of my faves. He offers it as a gift from HIS Mazza Estates winery up in Ontario, and as I hear him and Mike conversing more about it, I am reading the label on the bottle. It starts out ” When Joe Mazza Sr. ventured to Canada in 1958 from his native Italy…” and so at this point I am imagining Joe Sr, with his great smile, selectively picking the grapes off the vines, and literally creating wine with his bare hands, then pouring the miraculous liquid into a glass for me try and it is delightful. Yes, I know, my imagination runs away sometimes. How cool was I finding this whole imaginary scene and experience of randomly meeting Joe Sr? Very. Now what Joe Sr, doesn’t realize is that I am that kind of person that will plan an entire vacation around an experience like this. Don’t be surprised Mr. Mazza Sr if you see me and Mike show up for a tour of your winery some day! That is one of the many many reasons I love this line of work, you never know who you are going to meet.
Well, the dolphins sure have been frisky lately. Last week, they were a bit stand offish and were not interested in us AT ALL. But that has changed this week and they have been playing and being very active. The manatees and the sea turtles are also around feeding on the flats. The wading birds are getting their nesting plumage and building nests on the rookeries. We had a fun group last week on our Stand up Paddleboard Shelling eco-tour too and they saw dolphins while out that trip also. What a bonus! What a great time to be on the water in Fort Myers beach!