The next day, we grabbed the rods, shrimp and some chum to try and bait up some dinner. But three miles off the seaward shore of Anclote, the seas were nudging two feet, and it quickly became obvious some of our anglers were soon to turn into chummers.
"I want to go in," said James my oldest nephew. You could see his energy drink wasn't doing well in his belly. Amy didn't look much better. We dropped back in the lee of the key to give them calmer water.
"Let's try a little here in the calmer water, then we'll ride the Sea-Doos. OK?" I asked. The idea brought a near mutiny, but just then a rod bobbed.
"I got it," about three of the kids yelled in unison. "It" was about 5 inches long. Two more miniature aquarium specimens sealed the mutiny pact, and it was obvious we'd have to head back to a seafood shop near the Sponge Docks if fish were to find their way to our grill.
My oldest son, Justin, and my brother, Brent, drove the 'Doos with a pair of kids on each. We zoomed up to the Anclote River and then puttered through the no-wake zones to the Sponge Docks. Even the kids were OK with the slow speeds as they gawked up at the tall booms of shrimp boats and trawlers. They steered clear of tour boats as I followed along in the Bluewater.
But 20 minutes of "no wake" goes a long way on a watercraft capable of 65-mph, so we worked our way downstream and opened them back up in the bay behind Anclote Key. We couldn't hear the squeals of laughter over the Bluewater's stereo, but the smiles flashed from hundreds of yards away. By the time they were put on the trailer, the sun was setting and the sunburns were just warming up.