Fishermen return to Docklands
By Rhonda Dredge
Footy fans might have stayed at home to watch the game but fishermen were ready and willing to travel the distance to Docklands during Grand Final weekend.
They came from St Albans, Box Hill, Footscray, Preston and Ivanhoe after almost eight months of lockdown.
Some set up near the Sunday Market, others moved around the harbour, while one cycled 30 kilometres along the Merri Creek to get here.
But the most successful was Connor Lim from St Albans who caught his first fish within
half an hour of arrival, a 38-centimetre bream near NAB on Harbour Promenade.
He arrived early at 7am. “This is the best time,” he said. That’s when fish swim up the river from the bay on the rising tide.
Connor had landed eight of the distinctive species by the time he left at 3pm for the 20-kilometre drive home. “I’ve been here the whole day,” he told Docklands News.
During the lockdown, restrictions have made fishing difficult, leading to some frustration amongst those in landlocked suburbs.
Boating has been banned and fishing confined to within five kilometres of home.
Grand Final weekend was the first weekend the limit was increased to 25 kilometres and
locals estimated there were 15 fishermen out on the harbour first thing on Sunday morning.
Not everyone was taking the job seriously, though. Some fishermen just like being by the water killing a bit of time with their mates.
For factory workers Brian Thanh and Vincent Nguyen, Victoria Harbour is a great place to relax.
“If I’m at home I talk too much. It makes more stress,” Brian said.
The fishermen tried their luck under the Westgate Bridge then found a sweet spot near NewQuay West where they could lounge by the water pretending.
Brian thought he had a bite and there was a bit of build-up but it soon subsided when nothing appeared on the hook.
“We’re trying with chicken. We try everything, even KFC,” he said.
The friends haven’t exercised during the lockdown. “It’s been work and home,” Vincent said. “Very dull.”