Fathers and Father In-Laws

*This post is missing photos and under construction**

See that? Margarita and bluefin tuna sushi. That’s where I was! Well, Lake Almanor to be exact. Guess what they have in Lake Almanor? Fishing, boating, beaches, parks, yummy coffee, a stocked grocery store and a superb candy shop. The candy shop is so good, they decided to make it a “shoppe.” Now, guess what they don’t have? A friggin’ wifi connection! At least not for Sprint customers. My husband has an iphone and it worked well once we were in the middle of the lake. Hmph.

Enough from Debbie Downer, let’s get back to the tuna.

I am not a big sushi eater. Tempura? California rolls? Yes, please! Sashimi? Sashimi? Bueller? Anyone? No. However, my father in-law caught this fish and brought it on our trip for us to enjoy. In Japan, bluefin is called, “The King of Sushi.” It melts in your mouth like buttah. Seriously, this is a soft, feathery light fish. It isn’t chewy or meaty, but more fruit like in texture. I would liken it to a salty peach.

Bluefin is highly coveted, it’s expensive (close to $30 a pound) and it is almost endangered. Long story short, you probably won’t be eating this stuff anytime soon. Then why do I bring it up? Glad you (didn’t) ask. First, let me introduce you to my father in-law, Auggie.

Here he is, teaching Dallas to drive a pontoon. He rented this boat and brought us all out on the lake for of . Not a bad grandpa, eh?

Anyway, Auggie is a fisherman. He’s a seasoned fisherman that has taught many people how to fish. The year Jy and I got married, he took us to Mexico. First to Buena Vista Resort and then to San Jose. I was so excited to go deep-sea fishing in Mexico. What an adventure! Boy, was I in for a surprise!

Me? I don’t get sea sick! (I don’t have any anti-frizz product either.)

We hopped on a boat and rocked over the waves until we were about sixty miles out from shore. Not sure what happened after that. I spent the rest of the boat ride below the deck, sweating and swaying in fish smell. Sea sick? More like sea death. **You would think I would have remembered this before booking our cruise to Alaska the following September. Alas, I forgot. Sea death and early pregnancy did not do that cruise any favors.**

Back to Auggie. He’s been fishing for over fifty years. (So says Jy.) He knows what he is doing. This past June, Auggie went fishing off of the coast of Baja, Mexico. He caught a ton of tuna and brought a bunch home. It’s not legal to sell this fish, since it is so highly coveted. Auggie returned home from his trip safely.

One week later, 44 American men chartered a boat to fish off the coast of Baja. 38 of them returned home. 37 of them still live. This was a boat full of men who are just like Auggie. For over twenty years, Auggie and his friends take fishing trips just like the group of men who chartered a boat named, Erik.

On Sunday, July 3rd, 2011, around 2:00 a.m. a fishing boat, the Erik, capsized 60-100 miles south of San Felipe and 2 miles off Mexico’s Baja coast. There were 43 passengers in total, 27 American tourists and 16 crew members, on board. To date, all except seven have been accounted for; some survivors were found along the coast as far down as Bahia de Los Angeles.  – Find Our Fathers

That could have been Auggie and his friends on the Erik. Easily. Don Lee is one of the missing men and he is the father to a friend from high school. Mandi Lee was class president for as many years as I can remember. She dedicated herself to her position year after year. Now, she dedicates herself to finding her father as well as the six other missing men.

Please, visit the Find Our Fathers website and find out what you can do to help bring Don Lee home. I couldn’t imagine not knowing where my dad is, what torture.

Don Lee and his fellow shipmates went out to sea for the love of fishing. True fishermen are like hunters. Though I don’t love the idea of hunting, I’d much rather eat meat from an animal that was carefully and respectfully caught. When Auggie and all the other Baja fishermen catch Marlin, they throw it back. They follow the rules and respect the sea. That’s why I was able to really savor the amazing tuna at Lake Almanor. We watched deer of all kind feed in the forest behind the house. We saw rabbits, quail and chipmunks. We drank margaritas and celebrated life as a blessed, happy family.

Glad to be home again, thank for coming back.

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