Author Topic: The Morning After  (Read 3909 times)

Offline Denny Welch

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The Morning After
« on: 11/29/14 10:52 UTC »
Well, it's the morning after our Umpteenth Annual Black Friday Minnow Fishing Trip On Clear Lake.  It's the one day of the year we fish live bait.  I picked Larry and Sturmer up at at the Park-n-Ride at 0530 in the morning in my new to me Tundra and we headed out.  About two minutes out Sturmer, now 86, started talking about the widow ladies who are out to snag him at the Old Folks Home aka The Porciline Palace.  Larry started in with his yearly update, in minute detail, of what happens to his digestive track if he gets off his gluten free diet.  I livened things up by talking about our friends who have died over the past year.

An hour later, we pulled into Granzella's for breakfast.  Tony, Aaron, Keith, Dick and Dewey were already there.  Larry put a damper on a really good breakfast because of his stories, in detail, of what happens to his "system" if he eats gluten stuff.  Several of us, mostly Dick, were on the leadership team that put together a Take A Vet Fishing event on Veterans Day Weekend.  It was a success with about 20 boats.  We were hemhawing about that until Tony accidentally dumped most of his coffee onto Keith's half eaten breakfast.  Aaron was embarrassed because Tony is his dad and it was hard for him to see his dad enter elderhood by doing stupid stuff.

We then talked about minnows.  Tony, always the optimist, was going to buy 7 dozen, me, the realist, 4 dozen, and Dick, the 'ole squeeze the nickel until the buffalo farts, 3 dozen.  The cost of all those minnows would have made a good down payment on the the truck.  An hour later we were at the lake, the boat had been inspected (quagga muscles), the rods rigged with 1/0 circle hooks and a small split shot about 30" above the hook (rocket science), and four dozen minnows had been dumped into the live well.  The minnows were lively little things and were looking forward to a great day of fishing.  They frolicked in the well and several were jumping out of the water.  I listened  and could hear a very high-pitched, "Take me, take me. Please, please please."  Sturmer couldn't hear them because he's old and going deaf.  Larry couldn't hear them either because every time he poked his stomach, he'd fart.  Gluten does that, I guess.

We finally got on the water after Larry got out of the bathroom.  It was an ugly weather day.  The wind was crankin' at about 25 mph and 18"-24" whitecaps covered the lake.  We graphed fish right away, but they were at 30'.  It was next to impossible to control the trolling motor to get the bait down.  The boat seems to get a mind of it's own in winds like that and after 45 minutes it was time to move.  That's about the time Sturmer had to pee.  It seems the pee bucket was still in my garage so I told him he had to pee over the side, front, or back of the boat.  You have to understand that Sturmer is mostly want to bionic...three knee replacements and one hip.  One of the knees is kind of jerky so he didn't want to stand at the front of the boat in 2' whitecaps.  He said he'd "hold it".  I told him he'd have to find it first, but he didn't laugh.

We managed to find the leeward sides of a couple islands and conditions improved, but the fishing didn't.  Zero fish after about 4 hours.  Larry and I each had a bite, but that was it.  In desperation, we took a long run to my 100 % hole.  Bingo, bango, bongo...Strumer got a nice four pounder.  I had put each of us in for the big fish pot so I told him to hang tight while I got the scale.  I turned for the scale when I heard the "KERPLOP".  Larry and I were yelling, but Sturmer's reply of "huh" pretty much said it all.

The rain started at about 1:30 and we made the long run back in.  All three boats made it back within ten minutes of each other.  Aaron caught a 10 catfish, Dick, a 3.8# largemouth and Sturmer, an illegal +/-  4# largemouth.  Dick took the money home.

And so ends another chapter of the Umpteenth Annual Black Friday Minnow Fishing Trip On Clear Lake.  I still don't know how much longer we'll all be around.  Hopefully, the kids, Keith and Aaron, will keep it alive.  They haven't reached their 40's yet.

 Fishing trips like this are a whole lot more important than catching a fish.  Most people go through their lives without knowing what we have.  You learn a whole lot about somebody when you spend a day on the water with them. Over time, you're able to laugh at each other's infirmaties and unabashedly cry at the other's loss of a loved one.  These friendships run deep. 

Same time, same place, next year.



« Last Edit: 11/29/14 11:00 UTC by Denny Welch »

Offline Jerry V

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Re: The Morning After
« Reply #1 on: 11/29/14 11:35 UTC »
A very stellar account of the days events Mr. Welch.  Thank you for your attention to detail, as that's what makes life so dad gum interesting.  Hats off to one of the coolest traditions I've ever had the pleasure to hear about, and thanks for sharing it all with us here.  I don't know about you, but I can't wait 'til next year.   :)
"What started as a hobby is now a way of life."  Justin9j

"It's a shame I have to work, cause I really don't have time for it." Shane

"A mind is a terrible thing to waste (or) losing your memory sucks."  Denny Welch

"I wonder what the fish feel like on those days when you can't buy a bite?" pjmc

Online ctom

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Re: The Morning After
« Reply #2 on: 11/29/14 11:41 UTC »
That Sturmer must have great balance in a bouncing boat with three legs....three knee replacements?

This would have to be one of those events that calls for being there. I can relate to most of it. Sounds like a great time though. Cheers for traditions!

Offline Denny Welch

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Re: The Morning After
« Reply #3 on: 11/29/14 12:13 UTC »
That Sturmer must have great balance in a bouncing boat with three legs....three knee replacements?

One was done twice.

Offline Jerry V

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Re: The Morning After
« Reply #4 on: 11/29/14 12:29 UTC »
Don't say it Tom...  you were thinking he was talking about the left knee - the right knee - and the wee knee...  we know.   ::)
"What started as a hobby is now a way of life."  Justin9j

"It's a shame I have to work, cause I really don't have time for it." Shane

"A mind is a terrible thing to waste (or) losing your memory sucks."  Denny Welch

"I wonder what the fish feel like on those days when you can't buy a bite?" pjmc

Online Muskygary

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Re: The Morning After
« Reply #5 on: 11/29/14 14:38 UTC »
Great story Denny. If you ever get bored you can write a book, sorta like Ed Zern. You guys ever spend a week in a  ;D ;D cabin together?

Online Lamar

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Re: The Morning After
« Reply #6 on: 11/29/14 15:05 UTC »
  Good times for sure Denny. The group of guys I go to Canada every year was our 19th year this year. Funny when we first started we would remove the cap off a bottle of whisky and toss it off the dock every night, talk about sex and play cards till 2am. Now we have a few drinks, sit around in our boxers and talk about politics till 10pm. What the hell happened ? But still some great memories of all the years of us bring our children and now back to just us old farts again. Each year on the first night we have a toast for the ones ( and even one of the children ) that is no longer with us. We always try to go the same time as two other groups. One of them has been going for 29 years. The stories at dinner are endless. Its traditions like these that make life fun.
I like the person I have become. I am not going to live forever, but while I am still here, I will not waste time lamenting what could have been, or worrying about what will be.

Offline MO QWACK

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Re: The Morning After
« Reply #7 on: 11/30/14 21:04 UTC »
Awesome story. I've learned  never take a trip for granted. It's about the people not the fish you chase. I would love to be able to Pee on i mean out of your boat  ;D

Online WALLEYE WACKER

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Re: The Morning After
« Reply #8 on: 12/01/14 00:33 UTC »
The time spent with friend's are priceless.  8)

Offline Kdog

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Re: The Morning After
« Reply #9 on: 12/01/14 09:55 UTC »
Priceless!
Wishing y'all tight lines and bent wriggling rods. Happy Fishing!