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Big Fish... and Other Stories

Added: Tuesday, October 22nd 2019 at 10:31pm by maggiesnextphase

Today I had a passenger who likes to fish... and had some good stories to tell.   He said he'd already caught his limit of salmon for the year.  Most of it is is in the freezer, but he's also been smoking it in his smoker.  Oh man... doesn't that sound GOOD!

I am envious. 

Last week he caught a 300lb Sturgeon!  I asked "how on earth do you haul it into the boat?"

"VERY CAREFULLY!"  He said.   

Apparently he has a pretty good sized boat, and someone else had the driving skills to get it into the right position.   

And then... after hauling it out... THEY LET IT GO!  You Aren't Allowed to Keep Anything Over 52 Inches, And This One was 7 Feet!

That's when he told me about the 16 foot stugeon that was caught in the 90s in the Mississippi River.   It didn't survive, so the Fish and Game people took it to be autopsied. 

The fish had a peculiar scar.  Upon further investigation they discovered a 56 gage musket ball still inside!  Those were last used in the Civil War, after which all soldiers were required to turn in their weapons.  

Next passenger... a woman with a large service dog that I drive pretty regularly.  On the way home we were supposed to pick up another passenger.   The guy was on a mobility scooter, and also had a service animal. 

The dog in my rig immediately started barking and trying to jump around inside the van.   The dog outside seemed calmer, but the owner said she can sometimes be "a bully". 

I didn't think it was going to work!  Especially with this particular passenger who has PTSD, anxiety, and has had bad experiences with other dogs attacking, which is why her dog was so hair triggered.

I called Dispatch to see if there were any other options.   They were scrambling to try to find a solution... and said to sit tight until they had a confirmation of one.  

They called the care center, where the new passenger lives, but they didn't have anyone who could come, even though they have a van.  No other drivers were anywhere close.

While we waited, the bigger dog calmed down.   Once calmed, both owners tentatively agreed to at least see if they could ride together.   Big dog and owner remained on the back seat while the scooter boarded with the smaller dog on the opposite side of it.  

Technically you are supposed to maneuver the scooter to face forward, so that the safetey belt could be fastened.  We had just talked about this in our mandatory safety meeting.   There was no way that was going to happen!

The man only had to go a few miles.  The alternative was to have him wait another hour... MINIMUM!  I promised I would drive very carefully, and I DID.  By the time he arrived, the whole carload had become fast friends... INCLUDING the DOGS!

You just never know what you're gonna get with this job!

User Comments

Every day is an adventure!!

It sure is!  And at the end of the day, I sometimes marvel at it, lol.

Sounds like quite the adventure! Wow!

I do know that generally dogs will settle in if given some space and time. My son's very elderly dog has always disliked other dogs, but got along with Morris as they were pups together.

This summer his dog met Charlie and after a few minutes Charlie realized that the older dog was not going to be playful. He left her alone and they became pals.

Great work you!

That's exactly what they must have needed... time and space.  I have ver little experience with dogs, so I'm learning...

I'd have worried about having a dog fight in the back of the buss but it sounds like you did okay. 

Yes, I know the word bus only has one s in it but sometimes my finger will hit a key twice. Sorry.

Yeah, that is what I was worried about.   We all were.  Thankfully everyone got used to each other in a hurry, including the dogs.  WHEW!

You just never know what you'll encounter from one day to the next and that's the excitment of this job.  Its like when I'd wake up every morning I'd be like, "ok what'll be happening today....", lol!

I'm so glad all your passengers behaved, even the 4 legged one.  :)

I know right!  I have to say, it's the variety and unpredictability that helps make this job so enjoyable. 

I suppose it's like that every time you work with people. 

Sometimes Maggie, I guess just wait until things calm down and it will work out. Bro. Doc

I think you are right.   I have definitely learned something from this experience. 

But, I am sure if I had been in shoes, after 10 mintues I would have been on the radio and ask what too do. And while doing all this I would be praying too. But we learn and find out things do work out good. I suppose you got behind schedule some over this? Bro. Doc

Gosh you do have some interesting conversatons.  Must make the job very enjoyable.

It totally does!  The cool thing about this first guy is that we were only driving for about 15 minutes!  It's amazing how much you can learn in that amount of time. 

My great great grandfather and kids used to sneak into the camps of the union soldiers and gather the ammo and throw it into the rivers. This was in Taney County. I wonder if that fish swallowed one from him.

Oh, what a great family tale!  I am pretty sure they connected the musket ball to the peculiar scar.  I suspect it took a musket to break the Skin like that. 

You should start writing all this stuff down, a book deal could be in the stars one day.

Lol.  To tell you the truth, I feel sheepish about sharing these experiences.  The stories may not all be mine to tell. 

As long as no one knows who you are talking about it seems ok.

Thanks!  I'll keep that in mind. 

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