Communication Woes

My new keyboard is here. πŸ™‚ When I spilled coffee on the old one it did a technological version of “mansplaining”. I tried logging on to Windows but when I entered my password the characters being entered were, um, different. My selection of a number key would produce “bkx##f!”. Every key was different and every result looked like some weird macro. I was annoyed.

My mood, and that of many on the Island, was not improved by the weather. Wednesday was miserable – hot, muggy, and windless. Today will be worse and then it apparently gets hotter, muggier, and more intolerable. We’re building character. πŸ™‚

I’ve been planning to install an exhaust fan in a wall of the sunporch. As much as I hate playing with electricity, it’s time to get that done.

However, we’re going to talk about something which happened yesterday. Allow me to set the stage.

  • The lobster season was not a huge success for most. Bills have not disappeared though and costs are rising.
  • The market price for wrinkles and clams (in the latter case it had been great) is falling to the point that it is not worth going out.
  • The herring are arriving – in big numbers. Fishermen are working on their weirs, twine, and equipment with a small spark of hope that they will be able to make some money this season. The weather isn’t helping and there are constant hassles (outboards won’t work, pile drivers are breaking, twine needs more repair than anticipated, boats aren’t ready).
  • Fears were raised earlier this year when the Government started to limit the herring catch offshore on the East Coast. Nothing was said about the inshore fishery, but a lot of the locals have been worried.

Yesterday morning phone calls were made to various Fishermen informing them that the DFO (Department of Fisheries & Oceans) had published an order on June 28 (!?!) limiting their daily quota of herring to 3,000 pounds.

Now, if you’re hoping for 100 tons of fish every time you shutoff or take your catch out of a weir – this number is traumatizing. Admittedly, 100 is a great day. Still 20 to 50 would be a reasonable result. However, 1.5? This was disastrous.

Word spread quickly and the collective blood pressure rose immediately to unhealthy levels. There were fishermen whose faces went from bright red to purple – not helped by the angry groups they were standing in and the conversations they were having. Calls were made to the other Islands and the angst in the Bay of Fundy went through the roof.

I had a copy of the Order emailed to me and, even with my limited understanding of the industry, I could see that it did not apply here. It just didn’t. I have no authority, of course, so my opinion has little value.

A few of the men called people at Fisheries and one of those Officers went and looked at the Order. He then called the quasi-official individual and “clarified” things.

A new email went out to the Fishermen with a “correction”. It told them that nothing had changed from last year. They can take out and sell whatever they get. There are some phone calls today with personal apologies being made.

We’re lucky it was a little cooler yesterday. Today they are all back to their preparations, exhausted from the tension the “mistake” cost them. Unfortunately the weather will be horrible but at least that small spark of hope has been re-ignited. πŸ™‚


  1. Glad for your new, replacement communication implement. πŸ™‚ I always find your “slice of life” stories so interesting. Can’t imagine trying to make a living by fishing like that, but it is a pretty cool thing to read about and imagine.

    Liked by 1 person

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