I went Deep sea fishing. Is this mostly a dude thing?

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Today was the first day of my 2-week break (In case you missed it, I shared a short update last night on why I’m taking a break.)

Frankly, I’m still unwinding. I’m guessing it’ll take at least 3 to 5 days before I actually feel like I’m in “break mode”. Right now, half of my brain is relaxing while the other half is still focused on my obligations back home. Le sigh.

Nonetheless, Day 1 of my break was an exciting time: I went deep sea fishing! 😆

I had never been deep sea fishing before this experience. In fact, I had never been fishing—period. It was never something I was particularly interested in as a child and my dad never saw fit to take me. Plus, it’s not really a sport that seems to attract many women. Or at least, that’s always been my impression.

But I’m a huge adrenaline junkie! My definition of a “break” involves numerous physical activities and adventures. I’m not satisfied until I’m so tired that I can barely move. So when the opportunity arose to try deep sea fishing, I couldn’t let it pass me by. My hope was that it would be the first of many adventures during my 2 weeks away from everyday life.

Now, I know what you might be thinking: I live in Los Angeles, so there is plenty of water around me. Surely there would be plenty of places to fish near home, right?

Wrong.

After spending hours researching, we found that most of the fishing spots in California hadn’t updated their websites in years. Honestly, many of them looked like they were built before JavaScript was even invented and left untouched after their initial creation. 🙄

“WTF?” we thought.

Eventually, though, our hard work paid off. After spending way too long scouring the internet, we found one placed that actually looked legit: Chanel Islands. It was relatively close (only about a 1.5 hour drive) and the reports said the waters had plenty of fish.

“We’ll take it,” we said.

3 days later, we were on our way to Chanel Islands. Driving up the day of would have been a nightmare, so we opted to make our way there the night before. Apparently when you go fishing, you have to show up early AF. We’re talking 5am early. 😬

Since we would be arriving the day before, we figured we may as well take the chance to explore Chanel Islands and see what we could enjoy that night. Sure, we had to wake up super early for fishing the next day, but there was no need to waste the chance for adventure!

We got to the Islands around 7pm last night. After checking into the hotel and unpacking, we decided to hit the town.

Chanel Islands is a beautiful town. It’s very clean and private, but also very quaint. The population is less than 4,000 people! That’s 400,000x smaller than Los Angeles! 🤣

Despite the huge difference from LA, I truly love it here. As we were driving around, I realized just how much I miss living in a small town.

Growing up, the town my family lived in was sparsely populated and very rural. Every home was required to have a minimum of 3 acres of land. Deer running through the backyard was a daily occurrence and sometimes you could even hear the howl of wild animals. It was unbelievably spacious, beautiful, and serene.

Every time I visit my childhood home, I feel at peace. There’s honestly nothing like it in the world: the privacy, the greenery, the fresh air.

It just feels like home.

Being in the city has never really given me that same sense of belonging.

One day when I’m ready to buy my first home, it definitely won’t be in a big city. I want to live somewhere rural where I can have a ton of land and be surrounded by nature, animals, and freedom.

Sorry, I went off on a tangent there! I digress.

After arriving, we decided to explore Chanel Islands a bit and ended up at this impeccable Brazilian restaurant. Gosh, was it delicious! Fried plantains, rice, seafood. More fried plantains for dessert! Yummy.

Not long after we left, I fell into a wonderful food coma and crashed back at the hotel. 😴

The next morning, I woke up at 4am and decided to go for a short run. Whenever I go to new cities, I like to go for runs early in the morning. You may be wondering: why?

Well, two things.

One, it’s an easy way to get in a quick workout. Just because I’m on a break from my everyday life doesn’t mean I’m on a break from staying in shape.

Two, it gives me the opportunity to wander the local streets and alleys while everyone is asleep. It can be scary sometimes to explore the city before it’s truly awake, since it’s often pitch dark and no one else is around. All you hear are your own footsteps and the sound of the wind whistling through the trees.

Sometimes on these early morning runs, I feel very vulnerable. Anything could happen: I could be kidnapped or eaten by a snake or fall into an ocean. Who knows?!

But for real, I love the challenge and thrill of an early morning run. In modern times, we’ve grown so used to an abundance of comfort. Introducing doses of challenge and risk into our lives is necessary to make us feel alive.

On this occasion, I ran close to 3 miles and saw a grand total of 3 cars and 0 people. Just how I like it. 😌

After returning to the hotel, I took a quick shower and then we jetted to the harbor. Despite the 40 degree weather outside, it was too beautiful to complain. The day was absolutely perfect for deep sea fishing.

In total, we spent 10 hours fishing. I even caught my first fish within 5 minutes! I learned that fishing is a game of patience, vigilance, and luck. While you can control your patience and vigilance, luck is something only the universe can grant you. Fortunately, I must have had all 3 because at the end of the day, I had caught 5 fish. Not bad, right?

I highly recommend everyone go fishing at least once in their life. Practicing patience and vigilance in this day and age is more important than ever. Most people nowadays are addicted to a constant stream of dopamine in our go, go, go society. Fishing offers up the complete opposite experience: it’s all about waiting and watching, which sometimes pays off in huge rewards.

Since we’re on the topic of deep sea fishing, here are some random thoughts I had while we were out on the water:

Protected fish (Hooray!)

While we were on the boat, there were several instances where people would catch fish and the fisherman would tell them to throw their catch back in the water.

I was initially confused. Why catch them if you can’t keep them?

I learned certain fish are protected and it’s actually illegal to keep them if you catch them. For example, some species of fish cannot be caught until they reach a certain size. Others are completely protected and must always be thrown back.

It was really refreshing to see people actually giving a fuck about the environment.

Fishing is mostly men

Fishing seems to be a pretty masculine activity. No joke, 95% of the people on the boat were men.

Why?

Well, for starters, it’s dirty and smelly. Generally, women do not enjoy activities that are dirty and/or smelly.

Second, it’s a very atypical social experience. Women generally love to socialize in groups and men do, too, to an extent. But men also typically enjoy isolation.

I rarely meet other women who travel alone. There are some, of course, but it’s not common. On the other hand, it’s not uncommon to see men traveling alone.

My gut tells me that one of the reasons fishing is mostly a dude sport is because it’s a very isolated, solo experience—the type of thing most men deeply enjoy.

But that’s just my guess. I’d love to hear your thoughts. 🙂

Eating food with fish-scale-covered hands can be grossly fun

When I first hopped on the boat, the food in the little kitchen looked so unappetizing. The kitchen itself was dirty and everywhere smelled like a rank mixture of fish and bird poop.

“Yuck,” I thought. “There is no way I’m putting any of this in my mouth. I’ll wait to eat until we get off the boat.”

But after hours of fishing, I was ravenous. With no other option, I gave in and ordered a pastrami sandwich.

God. Hot. Damn.

That pastrami sandwich was the best pastrami sandwich I have ever had in my entire life, hands down.

And the best part? We were eating our sandwiches with dirty, smelly hands covered in fish scales. On land, that would be absolutely gross. But something about being on the boat made the experience surreal. It’s still a little gross, I know. You’ll just have to trust me: every bite was totally worth it.

After I finished eating, I turned to the old fisherman who was sitting near me and asked what he does with all the fish he catches everyday. There is no way he eats it all!

“I eat a couple of ‘em. I give some to my neighbor. Last week, I gave ‘em to my gardner. Ain’t nothing like fresh fish. I live and die for this.” — fisherman

Damn. Okay. His answer gave me an entirely new outlook on things.

Well, I think that about wraps things up for now. I’m sure I’ll be back soon, but for now, I’m excited to go cook the fish I caught. Let’s see whether it’s truly to die for! 😉

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Why am I sharing my travel stories?

Founder & CEO of TruStory. I have a passion for understanding things at a fundamental level and sharing it as clearly as possible.

Preethi Kasireddy
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