The archetypical Southern man is supposed to be tough – and this is tough:
James Grant had barely caught his first fish when a shark plunged its teeth into his leg.
He had just entered the water at Garden Bay near Cosy Nook in Southland on Saturday when the next thing he knew a shark was wrapping its jaws around his leg.
And he’s got the holes in his wet suit and his leg to prove it.
“It was pretty well latched on, I was just trying to get it off.”
But Mr Grant, 24, a junior doctor, gave as good as he got – stabbing what he believed was a type of seven-gill shark, with his diving knife as he tried to get it to unlatch.
“I sort of just fought the shark off. The shark got a few stabs. The knife wasn’t long enough though,” he said.
When Mr Grant managed to get rid of the shark he tried to get the attention of his three friends, who were spearfishing just around the bay. But his mates did not take him seriously.
“I thought surely he hasn’t been bitten, there’s no way he has been bitten, he’s got to be taking the p…,” Mackley Lindsay said.
But he wasn’t, instead he sat on the shore stitching his own leg.
His friends carried on fishing while Mr Grant tacked the wounds together with a needle and thread from his first-aid kit for his pig-hunting dogs.
“I’m pretty happy I had such a thick wet suit on too,” he said.
Friend Jim Robins downplayed the event at the time. “He was walking so it couldn’t have been that bad,” he said.
However, his friends did do him a favour – taking him to the tavern in Colac Bay before the hospital.
The pub at Colac Bay served him a beer alongside a few bandages to stop his leg from dripping blood on the carpet. . .
I hope the beer was a Speights, he’d earned it.
Is this a cue for Good on ya mate?