Dodos, damn good Tube-fishing, dolphins and a touch of Doom

Dodos, damn good Tube-fishing, dolphins and a touch of Doom

    In the name of Nosferatu, this is exciting!
I've been looking forward to the start of my vacation for weeks.
There's just been too much going on lately, and the cold and darkness during the day made me really moody...

As always, we hope for a peaceful new year at the end of the old year, but at least it looks promising that my hearing situation will improve after the holidays.
A few weeks ago, I got a cochlear implant and had my nasal turbinates removed at the same time.
Fortunately, I can already breathe much better! Preparations: So, as I said, always everything in a mess, starting a thousand things at once and rushing to the next idea before finishing the previous one.
What's going on in my dog brain? 
Now it was time to start a new adventure, a vacation in Mauritius, with its toothy predators beneath the water's surface.
How should I approach it? 
Once again, I have to limit myself, which is both an advantage and a disadvantage. 
The advantage is that I won't get scattered and can focus on essential things, but what are these essential things? Unfortunately, there is a risk of backing on the wrong horse.
I decided to focus on surface fishing and fishing in shallower waters due to the limited packing space. I prepared popping and stickbait rods for casting 15-20 cm surface lures and jig heads with Mobybaits for boat trips, and lighter spinning rods for spoons and tubes for fishing from the shore. We'll see!

But there's another opponent that warned me with a wagging finger at the train station. But this time I wouldn't go down in history as King Hakuna Makt AA in Mauritius.
That's why my travel pharmacy does not only include a moisturizing spray for my freshly operated nose, but also plenty of Imodium Original to prevent unnecessary aerosols from the south.
In any case, things started off well when I met my dear friend Adam at the bus stop, who luckily had a spare mask.
I had completely forgotten about Covid, so I was really relieved that I didn't have to fish a vintage mouth-nose protection from the trash to get access to public transportation.

The flight went without any special incidents, I had a good seat with legroom, all tip-top!
I just had to explain to my surprised Czech neighbour when my wife and daughter, who both work as flight attendants on the flight, brought me a warm blanket and cold beer at regular intervals in economy class. Me lucky bastard! (Photos 007, 008, 009)
Arriving at the airport in Mauritius, I was welcomed by the brightness and warmth of Africa, and we drove to the crew residence, where the crew had some rest ahead of them, as they had to be fit again for a long-haul flight back home in two days. (Photos 010-012)
It's incredible what they do there, and when you hear what some people complain about on a flight, you don't give much on humanity anymore!  
The first day after arrival was all about getting some rest, exploring the hotel beach a bit, and making a few casts over the coral reefs, although there were only a few nibbles at first. When I got stuck at the ground, a rescue boat quickly approached, and I thought there might be trouble because I was fishing so close to the swimming beach. But that wasn't an issue; the guys just wanted to help me untangle my line.  How incredibly friendly!  I also noticed the numerous and gigantic fruit bats flying around.  I even came across the original Omega Three-Santa-Schalke Clause.  That must be a good omen for the second half of the Bundesliga season.  After all, it's Christmas Eve. 013.
I had never seen anything like it before! In the evening, the crew had booked the "All-in" option wisely at the restaurant, even though they had all worked through the entire night before. As a result, the mood was festive. Have you ever had royal blue Sambuca? Photos 014-017.
The next day, I hooked a really nice, fat fish from the pier, but unfortunately it slipped off the line under the pier after putting up a good fight. It was a kind of grouper, similar to those found frequently in Africa.  The most beautiful fish are the ones that got away! Later, we took a pedal catamaran provided by the hotel as a service to the nearby coral reefs and were able to catch one rockfish/grouper after another. It was amazing to see how much power these creatures had, even at a small size. I got stung on the knuckle of my finger by the eleventh or twelfth fish, which simultaneously hurt, itched, and turned blue. Fortunately, it subsided relatively quickly, so I was able to unhook the next ones by twisting the hook. Apparently, they are not venomous. It was a dream fishing experience with light gear!

Dress Code In the evenings, everyone gathered at the beach table to have a last extravagant and formal dinner, strictly adhering to a dress code.
I often wonder who comes up with dress codes. You're sitting there, just starting your main course, when suddenly a loud signal goes off because of dress code violation! We didn't celebrate today, as it's not allowed on the last day before a flight, but the atmosphere was still amazing! Moving to the Southwest The next morning, I moved to Flic en Flac, and I couldn't sleep at night due to excitement, especially since Anja had to work and had to wake up at 5:00 am. I'm always restless at night when she has to leave, whether abroad or at home. I always subconsciously worry that she might oversleep or something... She flew on a plane full of people to Frankfurt/Main, and after two days, she was supposed to come back to Mauritius on standby with another airline. 

For me, it was finally time to start my fishing trips.
Unfortunately, the fishing tour I had booked in advance was a good half-hour drive from my accommodation in Flic en Flac, so I had to take a taxi there. I wasn’t happy about that. I had messed up the planning on that one!
It made the first tour unnecessarily expensive.

What I also didn't like was the dead cockroach lying right in front of my bed in the new accommodation.
It was the first of many, which I didn't know at the time.
It was a bit of a culture shock coming from the crew hotel, where everything was taken care of, to a place where not a single piece of furniture would have survived for more than two days and cleanliness was a utopia! Not to mention the latrine. At least it had a seat, made of extremely porous and weathered plastic. When the promotional photos for the rental platform were taken, Osama Bin Laden was probably celebrating his first communion. But I didn't want to get off on negative details then, and I just hoped that Anja would not meet any cockroaches. Just one day later, the accommodation, which was rather modest by European standards, turned out to be the point that sparked some food for thought, especially because people there were not unhappier than us at home with all our coordinated trinkets. 025-029
Back to the boat tour: The previous evening, the captain had sent me pictures of impressive fish, so I was really excited! Despite our best efforts, we didn't catch anything, even though we tried everything from shrimps on a free line, rubber lures, "Rapalas", poppers, maks, casted or trolled. 
Unfortunately, trolling was mostly the only way to catch anything at the moment. There were lots of frigate birds, which meant the tuna were there, but they weren't in the mood to bite, and we only saw very few of them hunting on the surface. 030 However, they didn't bite in deeper waters today, neither in 70, 300, nor 1000 meters deep.   I don't blame the skipper, it was just bad luck. Yesterday he caught some good fish. We were also sailing in very choppy waters towards the end of the tour. It was a "go big or go home" situation, but we didn't catch anything. Instead, the captain lost his cap and we couldn't save it.
I wondered what would happen if someone accidentally fell into the water without any flotation devices. None of us were wearing life jackets. It's better not to think about it.
On top of that, we had a disappointing 6.5-hour trip that was quite expensive.
Did that mean we needed to reconsider our plans?
I was really exhausted when I arrived at the accommodation in the evening.
I had mistakenly assumed that I would be able to cook fish, but all I had left were two eggs that I had taken from the breakfast buffet at the crew hotel.
Merry Christmas!
Now I needed to go home and wish everyone a Merry Christmas and coordinate Anja's arrival.
However, the internet wasn't working. It couldn't connect for some reason. The landlord Kris said it was an issue with Apple, but at that moment I didn't really care whose fault it was.
I had had a similar situation in the past where I couldn't send my agreed-upon check-in message from somewhere in Africa... Anyway, I had Kris relay a message to Anja over the phone that I was doing well, and then I went to sleep after cleaning my fishing gear from the saltwater.
Unfortunately, I hadn't mentioned my name in the message, so the unknown number probably sounded like a suspicious offer from a far-off land.
I didn't hear any cockroaches at night, but that doesn't really mean much for me. Instead, I had wild dreams, as I often do when I'm far away from home.
They were quite nonsensical!
Day 3 In the morning, I had a phone conversation with Anja through landlord Kris, so everything was sorted out and I quickly considered the "loss" of internet as a gain.
Moving away from deficit thinking towards freedom from the digital prison, I had an engaging philosophical conversation with our landlord Kris, who impressed me a lot.
Now the vacation could begin, and I had a simple breakfast of instant coffee, Trinkfix Orange, baguette, butter, and homemade jam.
I've never enjoyed a simple jam sandwich as much as this one!
Beach fishing Later, when I went to explore the beach, I saw some people fishing, and they said there could be some action here.
So, what does Mr. Lohmölloir do logically?
After all, this day was supposed to be dedicated to exploring the new terrain and preparing the new home. As expected, I walked towards the room and brought back a large pack of water from the neighbouring supermarket. It was always above 30 degrees Celsius here. 036
After that, I grabbed my fishing rod with some lures and a handful of spoons and headed to the beach.
Due to the low tide, I wanted to go to the edge of the reef, but I was running a bit late.
Nevertheless, I struck up a conversation with the local anglers, who were mostly fishing for nearshore fish with a water ball and bread crumbs.
The boy in the photo was named Brad and he caught a fish whose name sounds somewhat similar to Kryptonite.
 Spiky Danger In the water, there were not only many rocks but also many sea urchins, called "Ussäh" by the locals. You had to be careful. One wrong step meant a ticket to the hospital. After watching someone with several broken spines in their foot years ago, I always wear old running shoes while beach fishing. 038-040
Bottom Fishing On the way back to Casa Cockroach, I struck up a conversation with a local skipper who had just finished a previous trip and was taking a short lunch break. We got along quite well, and he told me that two people had canceled a later tour and asked if I wanted to join.
Although I was already disappointed from spending a lot of money for nothing the day before and wanted to settle in first, I asked what he had planned and how much it would cost. He said he wanted to fish for 3-4 hours at the bottom and he would charge 2000 rupees for it. Well, considering that the gas prices here are also 75 rupees, or about 160 cents per litre, that was more than fair.
Besides, using dropshot fishing in depths of sometimes less than 300 meters, we were likely to catch fish for the upcoming fish dinner with Madame. 041-050
In the end, we didn't get back until late in the dark, and I secretly worried that we had negotiated an hourly rate... Fortunately, that wasn't the case. There were three pleasant boys from Mauritius on board who had led colourful lives, which had even taken them to Europe. One of them was a real metalhead and was somewhat envious that I had seen Slayer live.
In return, he had a big pentagram tattoo. Not bad either! 051 Group photo
So what did we do besides talking about Dave Lombardo, Lemmy Kilmister, and GG Allin?

Let me briefly explain the type of fishing we did that day: You use a sidearm rig with two cut-off iron bars, similar to those used for making reinforced concrete, weighing about 400g roughly estimated. The bait used is octopus chunks, pieces of fish or small fish. We caught these directly on the beach with a net before the tour. When you get a bite, you set the hook and reel up the rig 10 meters. If there's no fish, you let it down again. The colleagues on board were a bit surprised that I had made contact with the bottom fairly quickly and noticed quite a few bites. I initially fished with a 0.18mm line and my rig was already down in what felt like 20 minutes, not after an estimated seven years like theirs!
As a result, reeling up took considerably longer. 052-060
Additional information for fishing enthusiasts: I used my 2.40m 15-45g rod based on a CTS Elite SD blank for this rig and I had a reel with about 300m of 0.18mm Jaybraid and a 0.30mm nylon leader attached to it, both connected with a clean FG knot. I tied a good swivel to the leader, to which I attached the rig. I also had several meters of 0.30 nylon as backing, as I had experienced a nasty break-off due to knots on the line in previous days. Although the rig worked quite well, as I had the line down to the bottom line after a nasty snag and had to break it off. In fact, the line broke at the swivel during final assembly, not while fishing. Lucky me! I also use this setup for tube fishing or what we call jigging in Germany. When everything is well coordinated, in case of a snag, usually the knot to the hook breaks and I can continue fishing with the leader without adding too much trash to the water. After the break, I switched to a different combo, as I was expecting to catch some big GTs or tunas. I used my 2.75m CTS Revo Salt rod, which is based on a #12 fly rod blank. Soft and sensitive at the front but with a good backbone at the back, as the international show-off would say. I paired it with a 14,000-size reel loaded with about 350m of 0.32mm Jaybraid. It took a bit longer to retrieve the bait and weight from the bottom, but I had some power reserves left. The catch was very diverse and colourful. I caught several fish whose names I couldn't remember, except for Gag Grouper, Red Grouper, Red Snapper, Green Snapper, regular Groupers, Captainsfish, various species of Butterflyfish, Rainbowfish, Squirrelfish, Parrotfish, Blacktail Snapper and many more.

At the Jumbo Market It was a great experience, and after arriving well after dark, I selected four fish for dinner the next day and made a detour to the supermarket to buy some bread and two cold bottles of beer. 061a I could leave the bag with the fish and my belongings under supervision at the entrance of the store and I also bought some sausages, smoked marlin and fluffy buns. As I stood at the checkout of the Jumbo Market, which was overly lit with neon lights, suddenly music blared at full volume that would never have appealed to me at any other time in my life, but here, in the midst of the overcrowded supermarket, it hit me to the core. Amidst general swaying and dancing, Stevie Wonder's cheesy 80s hit "I Just Called to Say I Love You" was played. Unfortunately, it didn't apply to me!

I was completely cut off. 061
Now, I need to pull myself together and quickly go home, where I still had to fillet the fish and my small room was still completely messy. 061b
I had originally been on my way home to clean up when I got into a conversation with Bats, and instead, I went straight home to gather my things for the boat tour. During the boat trip, Ritchie showed me a spot where you can try your luck catching GTs with poppers from the shore. I might give it a try sometime. Maybe I'll go fishing with Bats again when we both have time, firing poppers and stickbaits at the cliffs, win or lose. Or try grouper fishing with the tube at the reef edges, which was a lot of fun a few days ago with the pedal boat!   Some philosophical aspects left me pensive during the drive from the island hotel to Kris' room, the almost blind 80-year-old Indian. 
Besides the obvious signs of his deteriorating eyesight, such as the appearance of the same jam-stained coasters on our table the next morning, it was also evident during the drive that we encountered extreme poverty as well as ostentatiously expensive cars on display. Furthermore, the driver Aimee told me the origin of the name Black River.
When I guessed it might be related to volcanic ash or coal, he revealed the ugly truth that it was named after the place where slaves were gathered and shipped out in the past. Even today, the gap between rich people and those struggling to survive is dramatic. But well, I came here for this kind of information and not to stay in a secluded hotel. I don't want to observe people like animals in a zoo. I want to have at least some understanding of how they are like. This includes the truth that people are not particularly mindful of the environment that was probably once stunningly beautiful. Even Kris, who is a highly educated, dignified and thoughtful man, a former university teacher with whom I had engaging conversations about happiness and what it takes to achieve it, deeply disturbed me with his actions.
One morning, I brought my trash, which included some stinky fish leftovers, to him and asked how I should dispose of it and if there was a special place for it. Kris told me, literally, "Throw it away!"  I asked, "Where is the place for this kind of rubbish?"  Kris pointed to the undeveloped plot next door and said, "Just throw it away, right there!" 
When I expressed hesitation because in Germany we would have to pay a 1000€ for such an action, he boldly grabbed the plastic bag with all its packaging and smelly garbage and threw it across the street with a cheerful "Hui!". "Now I have to pay you 1000€, hehe!" 062-065

Okay, I have learned my lesson: In the past, Germans were champions in suppressing the Herero uprisings, then in systematically gassing people and at some point, we became football world champions a few times and today we are only champions of morality. If not even champions of double standards. I remember with horror how our Interior Minister recently embarrassed us in Qatar with the One Love band displayed on her arm, while ministers from the same government were signing long-term contracts to buy oil and gas. To clarify: I am in favour of equal rights for all people, regardless of their sexual orientation, skin color and even musical taste. What can we do? I think everyone should start with themselves and try to be a friendly, humorous person.
Of course, there are limits when exploitation begins and friendship ends.
Unfortunately, not everyone realizes that. It may sound trivial but that is probably the original message of any religious action.

Today, we'll see if we can rent a scooter and visit the GT cliffs!

There were no scooters or cars available in the town, so after a long sleep, we spent some time on the beach under exotic pine trees in the shadow and met a befriended group of local kayak fishermen. They were on a holiday tour, visiting various spots. On Saturday, they were planning to go to the deep south. One of my fellow travelers even shared my name and after discussing technical details about Monofile or Dyneema line, we agreed to attempt a joint tour. I contacted the rental place in Port Louis that was willing to deliver the pedal kayak, and I could have gone with the guys…   Unfortunately, the rental company didn't deliver, so we had to cancel the group tour including my participation. However, I'm staying in touch with the guys through social media and hoping they'll come visit me at home sometime. I'm overwhelmed by their friendly and engaging, yet reserved nature.

A visit is not out of the question, as they all seemed to have good occupations, some of them being self-employed with workplaces in Dubai. In the evening, we tried a tour to the cliffs where we were able to catch some nice grouper and red grouper. 069-085.

Successful lures were a red and white spook bait, and later, after I had figured out the bottom structure, tubes filled with steel that I cast out as far as possible and then jigged while letting them sink. When it was completely dark, we headed back home to cook some fish and make plans for the next day. It was supposed to be a hiking day with a visit to a rum distillery afterwards. After cooking, we eventually mustered the courage to do the dishes, but unfortunately, it didn't work out. We ran out of water! Apparently, the tank was completely empty due to low tide. The water actually came from a water tank on the roof, unlike in Europe where it comes from below. So we postponed doing the dishes and made jokes about whether we should throw our own leftovers in the neighbour's garden the next morning. "Just throw it away when it smells. We don't care!" Luckily, we persisted this action, as the government water truck filled up the tank on the roof for the bathroom early in the morning. What I couldn't avoid was getting rid of a final struggling cockroach that was flipping on its back, waiting for its demise. Apparently, pest control here involves the use of poison. Men in Black would be proud. 086.   Mountain Trip During the day, we took a taxi driver to Black River, where we hiked through the largest forest in Mauritius with a view of Le Morne Mountain, and then visited a rum distillery for some tasting. The forest was impressive, with the entire flora changing every 5 meters. Crazy! I suspect that the grandeur and scale of nature here won't be fully captured in the pictures. The rum tasting was... "Hicks!" 087-094

France, quo vadis?
We didn't see the French guests who were supposed to stay with us and whom I was asked to clean up after in the communal kitchen in the evening. Instead, Kris left us new towels and a roll of toilet paper. A kind of peace offering? Tomorrow, we'll take it easy as Bats is fully booked, but we'll find ways to keep ourselves occupied! We also need to make preparations for the New Year's celebrations. 094 Bats has time for us on Monday and Tuesday morning.     New Year's Revelation New Year's morning started with wonderful sunshine! 095 By the way, I had my first meaningful and clear dream today. It was almost a revelation: The Golden Perch appeared to me and emphatically stated that those who do not clearly acknowledge the COP (Church of Perch) may not enter the Kingdom. Instead, Armageddon is coming, which means that either Nosferatu or another savior with a machine gun and an older black Volvo car will send all non-believers ratatatatatatat to hell via the Chicago Turnaround! Too bad. Am I now called to spread this message to the dark world? I'm happy to do it, but not in a dogmatic way, and I won't judge anyone who chooses the path of the Volvo. Everyone can decide for themselves! Church of Perch - Join us if you want. 096

Back to the daily business here.
Interior Design Development Aid à la Lohmölloir: I'm even considering refreshing the interior here. In the bedroom, I would replace the collage of faded songbirds under the broken neon tube with a picture of the three little pigs and the huffing Big Bad Wolf. 097 The rest can almost stay the same.

However, the toilet has a serious malfunction.
And I'm not talking about the flushing, which gurgles happily about two hours after use. It flushes away properly.
Nevertheless, there's some kind of aquarium in the toilet bowl after use. Does anyone want to see that?

The announced French guests were no longer present, as evidenced by the missing breakfast set at the communal table. Did they find it unpleasant or too conventional here? Comforts not only make us physically sluggish but also mentally stagnant and don't bring any new insights.

Unfortunately, I can no longer communicate this to them.

New Year's Eve was simply beautiful!

After a barbecue, we lay on some sun loungers from another hotel and enjoyed the view of the lively activities on the beach. In principle, for this vacation, just an igloo tent on the beach would have been enough.    

"A Firework for Four-Legged Friends“

With a well-cooled can of Phoenix beer, we enjoyed New Year's Eve just as much as a few unimpressed dogs who seemed to take pleasure in the fireworks and salutes, just like us. Who spread the rumor that dogs don't like firecrackers and that they have a miserable life on the warm dog beach here? The dogs we had the pleasure of meeting did not seem at all like they needed to be transported to freezing Germany. They feel right at home here and appeared well-nourished! 098-110 DOOM! For our six-legged friends divided into segments, Kris handed us a different kind of can. Doom! 111, 112

When I asked if this toxic fog belonged in a sleeping room for humans, he just replied, "Humans are strong! You will not die!" Hmm.

Fishing today was amazing! It was only "bottom fishing," but we're slowly getting used to it. What a variety of fish we were able to catch here! It was also thrilling to see a school of giant barracudas right under the boat. Unfortunately, none of them bit. 113-120 The next morning, we had planned another tour with Bats and his small boat .

Kayak Fishing in Mauritius

While waiting on the beach, I immediately noticed a kayak angler who was getting ready for a tour. He introduced himself as Robert, and his local name was obviously not easy to remember or pronounce, not just for me. Somewhere, I heard - probably in an educational seminar - that it diminishes the dignity of a person if one doesn't make the effort to pronounce their name perfectly and doesn't keep trying. I don't think Robert, who made an impression of being highly educated and whose sister has been living in Oberhausen for 30 years, felt negatively classified by me. We had a lively conversation about kayak fishing, and I admired his numerous well-thought-out modifications and beautifully executed upgrades to his vessel. These included an innovative method of attaching the transducer directly to the propulsion system and a sunshade for the monitor of the fishfinder. We independently came up with almost the same solution for our stabilizers. When Robert visits his sister in Oberhausen, we will go fishing together with my kayaks for a day   at home.  I prefer to fish on the Zweigkanal or Mittellandkanal. However, I wouldn't know how to explain to him the existing, senseless ban on fishing there at this time, despite having all the necessary qualifications and valid documents, from the large sport boat license to the successful fishing exam (since 1988).
We will probably go to the Netherlands, where boating together on the water works without many restrictions and the fish population is good.

The 6 hours on Bats' small boat with the 15 hp two-stroke engine passed quickly, despite the physically demanding fishing. As a reward, there were many strikes and several unusually beautiful and tasty fish. Today, I tried a few of my own ideas in addition to the well-known "construction site iron assembly". The Big Thing A variation in "shallow water" up to 50 meters depth was to drop a drop shot rig with a tungsten-filled tube as weight using a light rod. I also got a bite that kept me busy for quite a while. We did everything possible with this setup. The drag was adjusted to the line strength of about 7kg, and Bats drove the boat after the fish.
He promised to buy me a beer on the beach if we could land the fish. I knew then that the chances were minimal.
The fish eventually went deep and got tangled around a rock. My line got stuck there and the battle was over after half an hour. What can you do?

There is a video of parts of the fight, maybe I'll upload it somewhere, I'm not very tech-savvy.
We headed home around one o’clock in the morning, where we cooked the delicious fish and took a rest. We were a bit tired after all the action!u Trip to the GT cliffs In the afternoon, we explored the area a bit and actually walked to the GT cliffs, about 5 kilometers away. Forget about "You can't walk there, you need a car!" Madame even did the ten kilometers in flip-flops. And that on partly wobbly rocks.
Highest respect for that!
Stunning scenery, but no bites! But I can only repeat: Enjoy what you have! This was a great hike and the way back through various interesting areas took us along the roads.

Last night, I took the can of Doom from the nightstand and used it for the first time. A cockroach was so noisy that it couldn't be ignored. I would have never located it due to my monaural hearing. Luckily, Anja did, so the annoying crawler got a good shower of Doom. What can I say, the stuff works excellently.
Allegedly, cockroaches are supposed to survive a nuclear strike unlike humans. Not Doom.

Despite waking up at 5 o’clock in the morning, we didn't have a hangover from the spray poison.

Humans are strong!  

"But it was also a crazy night, either sweating to death or freezing, because you're lying in your sleeping bag all sweaty. The air conditioning is either too cold and loud or not working at all... There was no time to think. After all, we met at Bats' at 6 o’clock in the morning to take our last tour with him. 125 Today he had a big fish on the line, but he couldn't land it any more than I could yesterday. His wife had prepared delicious sardine salad and baguette, so this tour was also a culinary highlight. Dolphins and Turtles On our way, we saw dolphins and sea turtles. We found it strange to see speedboats circling around them and trying to let their hastily brought passengers swim with them. We then went further out and got a private dolphin show while fishing. Dolphins usually stay close to the shore in the morning, but later you can also encounter them outside by chance. By the way, where there are dolphins, there are no dangerous sharks, like on neighbouring islands or in the north of Mauritius. Surprisingly, dolphins are superior to sharks and would clearly win a possible fight. They know exactly where the nerve centers and sensitive areas of the sharks are and attack them with their snout precisely and ruthlessly. It's a good thing that they just want to play with humans and especially with European swimmers! Unlike sharks, dolphins also prefer to stay in the warmer waters of a bay. Sharks prefer colder, deeper regions. I heard during the day of fishing that Bats's reel was deteriorating more and more, and I wondered if it would help him if I offered him the charter for today in the form of my Penn Slammer 760 filled with 0.32mm J-Braid. The otherwise rather reserved captain was visibly pleased, and so we made a deal. He told us that his son only had a rod but no reel, and now he would get dad's old reel. Very nice! Bats is an absolutely capable and pleasant skipper. He has my absolute recommendation if anyone is traveling in his area and wants to experience fishing close to the shore and in its original form. In the afternoon, we napped and lounged around the beach a bit. What more could you want? When we went to a street restaurant for dinner, we had very delicious grilled dishes and we could observe interesting intercultural situations. A woman from the Indian region, accompanied by her family, instructed a waiter brusquely and impatiently to clean her table immediately and thoroughly. The waiter immediately became frantic and jumped to do as she asked. I thought to myself, "What a xxx!" When a man from the neighboring table brought her a missing chair after the lightning-fast cleaning, she was the epitome of friendliness. In contrast to the waiter, she treated this foreign guest equitably. The waiter, on the other hand, was apparently below her status, and accordingly, she acted as described above. It seems easier to assert perceived claims against others when you consider yourself superior to them.
This is also a common pattern at home, where people often demean others from unfamiliar cultures who haven't seen much of the world themselves. Even in this situation, we tried to categorize and classify the "Indian caste system family" into stereotypes.

On trips like these, you constantly expand your horizons and yet often marvel at yourself!

On the penultimate day, after our usual breakfast of Trinkfix Orange, instant coffee and fluffy jam baguette, we went on a long hike along the beach. We passed by hotels that had catamaran-style pedal boats available for their guests. Unfortunately, we couldn't rent them.   Whether this hull shape might also be suitable for fishing boats? You would surely be able to achieve high speeds and maneuverability with it. Stability would probably be great too! If I ever switch to a motorboat in the future, I will definitely consider it. But there must be some catch that I can't think of right now, otherwise someone would have already built it. 129 In the afternoon, we arrived at the apartment feeling quite exhausted and made ourselves a delicious fish platter from the catch of the previous day. Several red-coluored fish, but with completely different flesh textures. Of course, the texture of the flesh is not determined by the colour of the skin! 130 J Now it was time for a siesta. We planned to go to the spot where we had caught some splendid groupers a few days ago and which I already knew a bit about. It's actually advantageous to scout out the spots at low tide to minimise losses of equipment during high tide. Nothing was happening until sunset, but fortunately, the feeding window opened with a bang when I switched from a spinner to Lohmöller's tube. You can find the tubes online hier.

For one hour, precisely between sunset and twilight, there were bites after bites. Some local anglers also noticed this, as their hard baits and rubber jigs with lead heads were not working at all. It may sound a bit awkward, but they took their plastic chairs and sat in a semi-circle behind me at a respectful distance, watching to see what Dr. Kreide's secret recipe was for success. This actually put a bit of pressure on me, but you know, I'm familiar with diamonds! I willingly gave the fellow anglers some tubes and explained the setup. They had already carefully studied the bait presentation.

Let me briefly explain how I fished from the shore: The coastline in this area is made up of cliffs that are flooded by the surf below. Behind them, there is a shallow rocky bottom that extends about 10 meters. Behind that, there are some large rocks sticking out of the water, behind which it often gets deeper. Some rocks only protrude just below the surface and occasionally caused snags, especially if you don’t know the spot well yet, particularly when the tubes got stuck on the sea urchins that are found everywhere there.
So, you have to cast your tube beyond this last row of rocks and jig it before it reaches the bottom. The rest is up to the fish, if they are there and interested.
Regarding the donation of tubes, I hope for two things: Firstly, for photos of nice colourful catches that my Mauritanian friends will email me.
Secondly, that they don't store the super lures together with conventional softener baits, as that would result in a big mushy lump, since our Mobys don't contain any toxic phthalates themselves and they would extract them from other baits during storage.
Whether these hopes are justified?
The language barrier, the language barrier...    
Not only you as a reader may wonder why this shore fishing for small groupers captivated and delighted me. I also asked myself this question. In the end, it was more fun than the thought of what awaited me on one of the big game boats. I guess it's just the thrill of figuring it out on my own and when it's eventually rewarded, it's very satisfying. Besides, there's always the possibility of hooking a big fish, like last year when I was able to catch a great GT from the shore.
For exciting and action-packed popper and stickbait fishing, Flic en Flac is simply not the right place or time at the moment.
I found bottom fishing quite interesting because I learned something new and can now build rigs that will surely help me in other situations as well.
Moreover, the variety of fish was outstanding!
Add to that the personal conversations on eye level with Bats, who also took a closer look a few times.
Why not try a big game tour far out? Admittedly, I have thought about it several times and have even set aside some money for "more expensive" boat tours throughout the year. Somehow, it just didn't grab me. Is it the idea that the skipper catches the fish and I have to fight it from a fighting chair while strapped in? Nope, that's not really my thing, although I would love to have a go at fighting a marlin, but preferably if I cast the bait myself. It's not that important to me after all. I have been offered to take over a fight on the rod and reel several times, but I have always politely declined.

I would like to learn the tarpon fight that the late Samuel offered me back then in Cuba on my own someday.
That includes the cast and the strike as well. What would be next? Should I let myself be called when someone catches a trophy bass and then drive there, hook a tube into the catch, and then have myself photographed? No, thank you!

No rule without exception: I actually took over a fight once but that was more due to the weakness caused by the "no desire" pandemic called Covid, when my fishing buddy Nuclear Hans was simply exhausted in between and we took turns fighting a nice tuna. We really lacked the physical stamina to handle such a fight alone. That's why we both got to be in the catch photo.

Today, we will relax a bit more and organize our return journey.
That's how we did it. In the evening, we went briefly to the shore hotspot for groupers and watched the sunset. Afterwards, we had a short delayed sundowner and then went to bed early, as the alarm was set for 4:30 am! After some wild dreams about flying foxes and dodos, the alarm rang and it was time for the final thrill: Did we make it or not?
Thanks to Anja's job with an airline, we were able to sign up for standby with two different airlines, but it didn't look good.
We could only say a brief hello and wave to our own crew, but then we were fortunate enough to be able to fly with the competitor.
Lucky us!
Our flight departs at 8:30 am, originally planned about 30 minutes later. Estimated arrival in Frankfurt/Main is 5:30 pm CET.  

What remained memorable? From an angler's perspective, I had to make do with what Nosferatu, the patron saint of the Church of Perch, sent my way, and that was certainly characterised by a great variety.
I have never seen so many fantastic and colourful fish, let alone having caught them. Many aspects were quite challenging, especially fishing in deep waters, which initially seemed suspicious to me due to different expectations. I had anticipated using poppers and stickbaits for Mahi Mahi, Tuna and GT, and was looking forward to it.
Moreover, I had been dealing with some shoulder discomfort and occasional pain from fishing and other activities. Eventually, gear gets worn out! Trolling for Marlin and others was never a real option and it didn't seem promising in the southwest at that time.
Shore fishing was difficult but possible once I familiarized myself with the conditions and used the time after sunset.
If I had taken advantage of the early morning hours, I'm sure I could have caught more fish there too. In hindsight, regarding my choice of equipment, instead of taking a second heavy popper and stickbait rod, I should have brought a jigging rod around 1.80m with a reel seat suitable for the large Penn spinning reel, and also some jigs or dropshot weights for lighter rigs, if heavy gear wasn't necessary. After all, there are many depths between 20 and 200m! I ended up using the popper rod mostly as a downrigger rod for heavy paternoster systems, and for that, a slightly shorter rod would have been more ideal. I had 0.32mm line on the Saltiga, and if I had continued to use that reel, I could have switched to 0.28mm line to have more and slightly better sinking line on the spool for certain spots. Because in some places, it was too thin, so on the last day of fishing, I used a Penn Slammer 760, which seems to be better suited for this type of fishing.
I'll check at home if it has a higher line retrieval rate or a slightly larger handle. I still have one of the older generation Slammers in my closet as it has gave me confidence over the years. Not everything was worse in the past!
It was good to bring the two light rods for shore fishing, especially for the long casts with the tube for grouper, that was the trump card.
It was also good to bring the 70-pack of small sturdy hooks that I once bought for a few cents in Thailand. Only a few of them are left now.
I used them for bottom rigs and for the tubes. Good stuff for little money. Really! 
I filled the tubes with small sawed-off steel bolts that I had prepared at home. It was also surprising how the 0.55mm MB Pike fluorocarbon that Bats once used for building a bottom rig held up against his teeth when he tried to bite through it with an enthusiastic attempt, then looked puzzled and eventually took the pliers.  It seems to be good quality, I haven't caught a pike on it yet, but that will surely change soon!
My overall conclusion outside of fishing is clear:

I love the friendly people in Mauritius, the fruit bats, the climate, the cheerful street dogs, the rich vegetation, the beautiful mountains, my family and I love the dodos!

Correction by Nina Denise Stolle
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