Before seven in the morning, a kid passes me on his old bicycle, carrying a five gallon plastic bucket, with bait and tackle inside, on his bicycle handlebars. His fishing pole sticks out of an empty milk container secured to his back bike fender with a long bungee cord.
When the kid, who whizzes past me, makes a left turn towards the water, a block further down, I know for sure he is going fishing and joining another fisherman friend where the water meets the land.
There are fishermen on this jetty every morning, just at sunrise, and sometimes in the evening, at sunset. While you can catch fish other times of day, fisherman tell you exactly when the time is best to bait a hook, cast out, and wait for the fish to bite.
This Santo Domingo park, by the Napolitano Casino, will soon have its walkers and exercise people. City crews are putting down new sod and walkers, taking fresh air on a cool morning, can use a new swing set installed the other day by the parks and recreation department work crew. I watched some of the workers test the swing out, laughing, happy because it was almost quitting time.
At the end of the concrete jetty I am heading for, these two compadres already have their lines in the surf and are watching the sun come up over a not too distant shipyard as a ship steams past us towards the west.
Fishermen are eternally hopeful.
If you don’t try to catch anything, you won’t catch anything.
The kid’s bicycle is laid on the rocks close to him, and, if he is lucky and is using the right temptation, he will take some fish home for breakfast this morning, in his five gallon bucket with his bait, tackle, and pole still sticking out of the milk crate.