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Fishing as hobby pays dividend for civil servant couple

KUALA PERLIS, Md Suzari Md Suaain and wife, Nor Kartini Othman have rarely bought fish in the market over the past 10 years.

That’s because this civil servant couple’s hobby is fishing in the waters off Langkawi and Kuala Perlis.

Md Suzari, 51, who works as an assistant at the Operations and Enforcement Unit of the Perlis Forestry Department and his wife Nor Kartini, 47, a student management assistant at a school here, said they started the activity as a hobby but when they got used to it, both of them found great pleasure in it.

He said they usually go down to the sea twice a week to stock up the seafood, not for sale, but for the family’s consumption, and having a licence as a sailor accredited by the Malaysian Navy, he was able to indulge in sea activities such as catching squids which he loves.

However as we both are public servants, we can only go fishing during the weekends due to time constraint,” he told Bernama when met at the ‘Pesta Suluh Sotong Perlis 2020’ at Tok Kuning here, recently.

I am not from a family of fishermen, but when I hear people complaining about the high price of fish, prawns, squids due to uncertain weather conditions and so on, I feel they don’t appreciate the hardship endured by fishermen,” he said.

Md Suzari lamented that it was not easy to find big fish in the sea such as snapper, grouper and sea bass because it requires a lot of patience besides having to face the risk of inclement weather while at sea.

I learned the ins and outs of fishing at sea from fishermen who I enjoyed hanging out with in addition to active fishing with friends from the fishing club, said Md Suzari who is also deputy chairman of Perlis Fishing and Recreation Club.

He said in 2016 he had a private boat, but he later sold it because he didn’t have time to take care of the boat due to work constraints, but said he was fortunate that his uncle, Musa Nayan, 64, had a private boat and often took him along for fishing.

Nor Kartini, who started following her husband since five years back, said she prefers squid jigging or ‘candat sotong’ because it’s not as challenging as fishing.

The most exciting is when live squids, caught just seconds earlier, are cooked on the boat,” she said, adding that the largest amount of squids they ever caught was 50 kg within a few hours from 11 pm to 5.00 am.

Nor Kartini said she, her husband and three children were very fond of squids more than other seafood, thus squid jigging was their their main activity.

Thanks to their hobby, the couple had successfully bagged the first place in a squid jigging fest in 2018 where Md Suzairi won the prize for best captain or ‘tekong’ while Nur Kartini won the first place in the women’s category.

Source: BERNAMA (News Agency)

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