Friday, June 15, 2007


On Thursday, my two brothers and I headed out towards the bare sea to hunt for crabs, squid, pearl oysters and whatever might come our way. After we wore our rubber boots and grabbed the three new fishing spears that my older brother had bought, we started our walk toward the shallow shore. Low tide was at 5 PM and our plan was to make it back as soon as it turned dark.

A while ago, we used to “engamber” (shasawi ba3ad) during nighttime. If you want some game, that is the time to go out. A few years ago, my father and eldest sister were walking back from their sea adventure at 10 PM with a baby shark in their canvas bag. We stood over the large bucket we placed it in and watched it circle around before my sister released it back into the sea. Once, I caught an “iw7ara” (now, I could Google the name in English but I’m kind of lazy…but it is a big fish) and the darn thing almost twisted my spearhead off. I had to put all my weight on it to stop it from writhing around. I ended up carrying my spear on my shoulder with the surprisingly heavy “iw7ara” still on it.

It's always fun to hear such stories during family gatherings, like the time my older brother and cousin snagged a pearl oyster that was near the deep sea. "Yeah that was had five pearls in it," my older brother beamed. And the time when the oil lamp went out when my father, older brother, uncle, and two male cousins were in the middle of the sea, "The tide was coming in and the water reached our upper torso...that's when one of us got a glimpse of a little shark swimming by us and that's when all hell broke loose."

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My old rubber boots and new "kabar"

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Starting point...

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My older brother made me laugh when he said,
"Yallah, there are people here already."

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I was a little bit disappointed; there was nothing to be seen!
No crabs, pearl oysters...nada!
Then again, you have to be patient.

My brothers and I held our breath and walked closer
to the deep sea i.e. "el maya el zarga."

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"Ollahhhh! Shkither ganafiiiiiith!" My younger brother shouted.
"Akeed fi ma7ar hnee..." my older brother said,
since pearl oysters and sea urchins go hand in hand.

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It was kind of weird.
Usually, we're either lucky with sea animals

or a good bunch of pearl oysters. We spent almost an hour
without catching one single thing, with the exception of the
two pearl oysters I spotted, naturally :P

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It's so funny to see people going in for the kill. They have their
rear up and they're standing ever so still. This is where
my older brother caught a crab.

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By now, we had a my older brother's crab and
a few pearl oysters in the little plastic box we made my

little brother drag .

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"Tawa'jeesa..." I told my little brother
when he directed my attention to a baby crab.

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On the edge of "el maya il zarga," the deep sea.
When I was younger, I remember waiting on the rocks or
on one of the little sandy islands as my eldest sister
dove right into the deep waters in search of pearl oysters.

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Again, there was nothing. We didn't even see the usual
stingray. It was quite disappointing, to say the least.

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We come across a sleeping squid.
My older brother promptly "woke him up,"
so to speak.
The above photograph is the ink that the squid squirted.

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"Shall we go back?" It was almost dark and our luck
wasn't getting any better. My older brother said that after
the Gulf War, sea life was not the same again.
"It was much more abundant," he recalled,
"I remember the bag we used to carry what we
caught was
unbelievably heavy, we had to take turns
because it was too much on one person to
haul it around the whole time."
I added, "I think the pollution that we helped

to create and increase is another factor to consider."

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My boots saying goodbye.

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I showed my mother the photographs I took
before posting this.
"Don't post this one. It's embarrassing,
you didn't catch a thing!"

Oh well!

Dave Matthews Band - The Dreaming Tree
Philip Glass - The Kiss
Weezer - The Sweater Song
Bjork - Isobel (Portishead Remix)

at 11:53 PM


  1. Blogger illusion posted at 4:54 AM  
    Mashalla, its nice to see a girl that knows so much about fishing.

    I went fishing one time with my brother and I was so bored and what annoyed me even more, was that my brother kept catching all kinds of fish and I never did!
  2. Blogger hasbean posted at 7:34 AM  
    That was pretty captivating :) I'm certainly impressed with the pictures!
  3. Blogger 3abeer posted at 11:11 AM  
    I love tegimber!
    it's exciting :)

    Hope you had a nice time.. love the pictures ;)
  4. Blogger MSB posted at 11:23 AM  
    it's nice to see that you and your family have a 'thing'... looks like good family memories in the making!
  5. Blogger shoosha posted at 2:37 PM  
    those blue crabs scare the hell out of me!! they bit all my feet, oh well i guess thats what happen when u don't wear boots but i still love tegimber.. nice pics ;)
  6. Blogger Carly posted at 3:36 PM  
    I really like your use of dialogue-very nice!
  7. Blogger Erzulie posted at 7:45 PM  
    illusion: I enjoy it but compared to my eldest sister who is an expert at anything associated with the sea, I just know the basics. And about just takes patience and a certain kind of mood; you shouldn't be in a hurry.

    hasbean: Thanks :)

    3abeer: Yup, we had fun (although what we ended up with wasn't much). And thanks :)

    msb: My family and I have a lot of "things," :P~ But I really love the chalet, mostly because the entertainment factor is up to you and whoever you're with. That's what's great about it :)

    shoosha: I've noticed that baby crabs are more defensive than the larger ones; I often find the blue crabs hiding under a layer of sand while the little ones greet me with their little dance of courage (of course we don't get a hold of anything small; the crab has to be large/mature to go inside our little bag/box). Once, my eldest sister and I went to "engamber" and the water was a little bit over our knees. It was nighttime as well. Anyhow, all was quiet until we heard something splashing next to us. It was a large crab that somehow managed to float/swim while clicking it's claws at us! At first, we were a bit surprised by its courage but then, well, let's just say that its actions were suicidal :P~

    carly: Thank you :)
  8. Blogger MSB posted at 5:26 PM  
    3laikum ib alf 3afya.. Allah la Eghayer 3laikum inshAllah :)
  9. Blogger Erzulie posted at 11:28 PM  
    MSB: inshalla :) thanks :))

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