Posted by: nativeiowan | February 9, 2011

Another Peter Pan story

Steve Sirell, adventurer, teacher, tradesman, and mild mannered human…

I met Steve and his wife Jenny when they arrived to be Peace Corps Volunteers in the late 80s. They trained in Verehue, West Guadalcanal then took off for Choiseul Bay to be Provincial Secondary School (PSS) teachers. I had been an original “settler” at Choiseul Bay in 81 so knew the place well and we became friends immediately.

And the years phlash past…

In the late 90s when I had a lot of family living in the US we would always use The Sirell pad as base camp LA. I still tell quintessential southern-cal stories where we’d be in the hot tub in the back yard, drinking Corbel bubbly and sampling that ever so dangerous sonoma-coma or some similar cal-product. I often found the road from the hot tub to the bed very wobbly indeed.

My family all selfishly mourned when The Sirell pad was traded in for a yacht. Though yachts are cool we do still miss the luxury of having such a fine home and such fine family there when ever we passed through LA.

Steve was a compatriot. He and I were so similar in background. So different in temperament. So similar in what we enjoyed. I always enjoyed my time with Steve.

Here’s a Steve and Jenny fishing story that is part of another long tale…

I remember the time when Steve and Jenny Sirell came by for our 98 Christmas party. Steve had bought some real good gear for the trip. Shiny new Penn reels. All loaded up with the best mono line. Jenny was more excited over fishing than she was over Christmas. She was intent on getting out on the water. We kept promising we’d go but found that the Christmas spirit was strong in us and we were often inebriated by 4PM thus precluding a fishing trip.

A couple days into their stay Jenny was very serious. If we didn’t stay sober enough to take her fishing there would be hell to pay. Steve and I had the best intentions in the world. Yet by noon we had met up with Uncle Teddy and Pat, were in the Gizo Hotel slopping down Gizo Burgers and chugging good old SolBrew.

Jenny showed up around 2pm and made it clear we were going fishing and that Steve (and the rest of us) were in severe excrement. Steve’s conjugal rights were on the line. We downed a couple more beers and made it to the wharf in time. We staggered on to the boat got the motor started and started putting the lines out. We were rounding the first point as Jenny dropped the end of one line in the water and released the drag. This was the shiniest and most likely to “catch a fish” rig Steve had. Anyway, Jenny hit the drag and let out a squeal as if she’d sat on a tac. We all looked down and saw her reel’s line in a loose mess… a birds nest mess.

What brings this story to mind now is that the line was untangleable and had to be cut out and that, in contradiction to what I said above, Steve actually smiled and looked happy when he saw this. He knew that Jenny’s screwing up the line was worse than his being drinking for days running and thus had his conjugal rights back… and then some.

So bro, I raise my hand in toast and will do so from here on out…


  1. love the story.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: