At a beach south of Hilo I spent about 20 minutes watching this guy watch the water.
Bunched under his arm was a fishing net. He was standing on some rocks, staring into a pool. Leaning forward, ready to strike. Like a leopard.
Every minute or so he would stand up, loosening his stance. Readjust, stepping one or two feet to one side or another, angling.
I imagine that this was one of his usual spots. It’s hard to tell what exactly he was looking for. As he stood there, you could see in his stance that he was intent on accomplishing a single mission.
It went on like this. Standing at the ready, adjusting stance slightly, fiddling a little with the net, to make sure the weighted beads around its frill were hanging down and flat.
The tide was coming in.
I don’t know what his trigger was, but he saw his target through the chop and foam. Like a starburst his net, easily six feet across, cast wide for an instant before sinking to the bottom.
I watched him haul in the net, scooping nylon in voluminous bunches. A tangled snapper came in with one of the final pulls.
He hugged the net close as he walked across the jagged lava rocks to an orange five-gallon bucket he had perched on another rock, higher up away from the surf.
He fished his quarry out of the net, placed it in the bucket, put on the lid, bunched up his net, and tossed it over his shoulder. He waded through the rising tide, crossed through the beach. He put the bucket and his net in the back of his mini van, parked beneath some trees. And he drove off.
One cast, one fish. More anecdotal evidence that providence favors the patient and practiced.