In the beginning, a question lurking in my mind soon ended with gratitude. I forgot the details of how it all started, but one day Mr. Imam contacted me because he needed fishing lures to go popping somewhere in Eastern Indonesia. I do not personally know Mr. Imam as he belongs to a different generation of anglers. I am an angler who can only dedicate his free time to go fish; Mr. Imam, on the other hand, is a ‘senior’ angler who travels to remote and distant locations to practice this sport. As far as I know, the characteristics of the ‘senior’ generation of anglers in Indonesia has many differences with the social media driven generation of anglers I belong to. The ‘senior’ generation is relatively unfamiliar with social media, so only a few people know when they go out fishing and what the catch results are. This stands in big contrast to my generation, where already one year before the trip starts, the whole world is informed about it. Funny fact; even if the catch is not as rich as expected, or there is no catch at all, it gets camouflaged in various ways for the sake of posting a positive result on social media. Haha!
Batanta Popper and the Giant Trevally
Anyway, I sent some poppers to Semarang in Central Java and for quite a while I didn’t get an update from Mr. Imam. I thought maybe he didn’t have time to go fishing, but then in April, my phone rang while I was on duty trip in Sumbawa, West Nusa Tenggara. He sounded happy and told me he felt satisfied, not only because he caught a really good sized giant trevally (Caranx ignobilis), but because during the whole trip no one else managed to get a giant trevally biting the hook.
He told me numerous die-hard anglers had joined on the ship, but somehow only the Batanta popper was able to make a big fish bite. I thought maybe it is a mere coincidence, there are many x-factors in the sports fishing world. But Mr. Imam replied it is not just a coincidence, we tried for days to take a giant trevally but it was very difficult to make them bite. He found it strange, as the spot seemed a promising one. Only after replacing the lure with Batanta popper he saw a significant change. “Joooossss tenann poppermu Mek” Mr. Imam said to me in Javanese. In English it goes something like; “What a good popper you made!”. Deo Gratias, thank God, I thought. Another story about Batanta Popper being part in the happiness of an angler. One life some big fish!(Michael Risdianto)