The majority of us wish to live a straightforward and peaceful life. The last thing the typical person wants is for governments, major powers, or even the United States Navy to be worried with their private lives. But that does happen from time to time.
Darko Bigava, the subject of this narrative, is living, breathing proof. All he wanted to do was go fishing, make a profit off of his catch and preferably not deal with any military matters or politics. But then something happened that threw his world into disarray.
David Bigava was a fisherman in Elaphiti Islands, located in the south coast of Croatia. He comes from a family of fisherman and he’s been fishing ever since he was a small boy.
It was difficult for him to envision that the world’s largest military powers would intervene in his life in some way.
Bigava was content with his life as a fisherman. It wasn’t the most exciting life but he loved it. Every morning he wakes up at the crack of dawn to get his boat ready for that days adventure on the waters.
Every morning when he awoke, he anticipated the day to be comparable to, if not identical to, the day before. He’d been following the same routine for years and had never given any thought to the prospect of something strange occurring.
Throughout the day, all he had to do was watch as his nets to fill up, capture some fish, and transport the catch. After that, he went to the market to sell the fish to his long-time customers and friends.
Some of them ran restaurants, while others ran businesses. Bigava would have chuckled if someone had informed him that one day we would have to deal with the officers of the US Navy. Life, on the other hand, is frequently surprising.
When the event occurred, Bigava was struggling financially. Due to the pandemic, the tourist weren’t as many and thus restaurants bought less stock from Bigava.
Selling his fish to his regular customers was not enough to keep him afloat, he needed to procure more customers. If he did not meet his sales target, he would not be able to provide for his family.
So he got in his boat on the morning of the event, thinking about figures, clients, costs, and payments.
He spent the entire day doing calculations and attempting to come up with methods to get through another challenging month as he patiently waited for his net to fill up.
He felt his boat started to shake unexpectedly while deeply immersed in his thoughts. To keep from falling into the sea, he had to hold the edges of his boat.
He hadn’t experienced anything like it in a great many years, but he realized it could only imply one thing.
The only reason as to why his boat would shake like that is if something large is caught in his nets. This did not happen very often as he usually only caught relatively small fish.
This time, however, things were different.
He frantically wondered what might have caused such a big impact as he swiftly tried to maintain control of the situation and gain a steady grasp on his net to draw it out of the water.
He thought it might have been a large tuna fish, even though it was not tuna season anything could happen. Tuna fish were worth a lot of money so it wouldn’t be a horrible catch. When he eventually managed to lift the net, though, he was taken aback by what he saw.
It was a massive, heavy object unlike anything he’d ever seen before. It appeared to be a large orange box with a sensor connected to it. Apart from that, he had no idea what it was or what it might possibly be used for.
He was also horrified to see that the heaviness of the thing had ripped his nets apart. It would be too expensive for him to have them repaired. He went home to ponder about what to do with the weird device because the day had been hard and he couldn’t fish with those nets.
The first thing he did about it posted an ad online and contact one of the local newspapers. He didn’t know what to do with the object or who it belonged to, so the only thing he could do was hope for its owner to try to get it back and pay for the damage it had caused to his nets.
After a few days, someone got in contact with him. And it was someone he would have never expected to.
On another day of fishing, someone contacted Bigava on his boat’s radio. It was a man who claimed to speak on behalf of the US Navy.
In a broken Croatian, the man claimed that the object he had found belonged to the navy and demanded that Bigava gave it back. Bigava didn’t know if it was a joke and at this point he didn’t care. All he wanted was to get rid of the thing and get his nets repaired. Which is why he gave a shocking response to whoever was speaking to him on the radio.
“Look, pal,” he said, “I don’t care if this big orange box belongs to the US Navy or to Admiral Nelson. All I know is it has torn up my nexts and it’s gonna cost me three grand to fix them, so no one is getting this thing until I get the money to repair my nets.”
He then received a call on his cell phone. He picked it up, without knowing what to expect.
Again, it was the US Navy representative speaking broken Croatian. He repeated the same thing he had told Bigava over the radio, and the fisherman had to repeat his point once again. Then, the US Navy man hung up.
Would that be the end of it?
Luckily for all involved, it wasn’t. Eventually, the Croatian Coast Guard agreed to pay for the damages, on the condition that the US Navy would recoup them. And Bigava dropped the mysterious object in front of a US Navy ship.
However, it was never released to the public what that enigmatic orange box was. Bigava resumed his simple and comfortable life and decided not to worry about the matter any further, perhaps for his own good.