May 18, 2007
What a wild day! If you have ever watched the cable TV show "The Deadliest Catch", well, I can now say wholeheartedly I was there. We had to retrieve the fish traps we had set earlier and the weather was not our friend. The temperature dropped, the wind was blowing at 50 mph, the seas were good sized and we had to retrieve the fish traps. I am really amazed how good our Captain Scott Flannagan is, getting a 240 foot boat next to the buoys so we can hand snag them, this is something to see. With the wind and the waves, it was like something you see on TV. I did get wet a couple of times. The work is fast and furious. We dropped the traps over 1,000 feet. That is a lot of rope to coil back up when it comes back on board. I worked up quite a sweat getting the lines in. It did feel good to work that hard. Ice and snow all over the deck, bone chilling wind, seawater, and catching fish - it doesn't get any better than this.
I checked on one of the aquarium tanks and noticed that 7 ice fish had not survived, I pointed this out to Dr. Sidell and the look of disappointment was all too familiar. The look is the same look any dedicated athlete gets when they get to the state finals and lose. Everybody knows how incredible the amount of work is that it took to get there, but losing the final competition is so disheartening. I felt emptiness in my stomach and I don't even study these fish. The passion these scientists have for their work is more than admirable. I just hope tomorrow brings a good fish day.