Whole Fish

Gulf Seafood + Southern Food

Like many Houstonians, I lost a lot to Ike but none as painful to me as the loss of my 22.5 foot Marshall. It wasn’t so much the boat itself as the peace of mind that going out gave me – it was a kind of therapy for me. That boat kept me on an even keel in my life on land.

In my family, we traditionally greet each Hurricane headed our way with a party, making the rounds to one or two houses in our neighborhood to have cocktails before the big storm hits. Last year, the hours before Ike were no different: drinks at the McLemore’s, then it was off to batten down the hatches at home and ride out the storm. I was rounding third with my Turkey & Soda when I glanced at the T.V. and saw the thick black smoke bellowing from a coastal building in Galveston. My heart sank to my stomach – is that the dry storage at the yacht basin? It sure did look like it.

And it was.

Heartbroken I was, she wasn’t even a year old. Earlier in the year, my brother Mike and I bought the boat together from Norman Marshall of Marshall Marine out of Port Lavaca, TX - they craft one hell of a boat.

Last summer, I fished more than I have in about 15 years. I enjoyed the hell out of that Marshall. But, thanks to Ike, I haven’t been out for almost 8 months - the longest I’ve ever gone without a trip.

I have been running boats since I was 8 years old. When I detach from the shoreline, it’s as if the cord that tethers me to everything else has been cut and I run only local channels: no calls, no emails, no texts and no more everyday problems. It’s just clear, pure thought - freedom for just a while, true serenity, a bit of peace. There’s nothing but me, the crew and our mission.

Here are a few pictures from last summer’s excursions:

Heaven on Water, 2008

It has taken me some time, but we have commissioned a new vessel, as yet to be named but definitely seaworthy: the legendary, unsinkable Boston Whaler.

Boston Whaler

At a solid 26 feet, she’s a big ‘un! My largest ever, technically a yacht (this is the classification for a boat that breaches 25 feet), this boat breaks new ground for me -- now the fabled Flower Gardens, Boomvang, Tequila rig and The Claypiles, all 50-100 miles offshore, are within my grasp (all of these are underwater goldmines for fishermen).

After two prior failed attempts due to small mechanical difficulties, Monday, June 1st marked the Whaler’s maiden voyage offshore, to the tune of about 25 miles. With my buddies -- Farrar, Cameron Smith and his 13-year-old son, Ryan -- we headed out for the opening day of Snapper season. If it’s Duck, Dove, Deer or Snapper, for a guy like me, opening day is always mandatory attendance.

This year, I’m pretty sure I’m going to need a lot of therapy.

Farrar & me, double hookup
Here's to many tight lines for my brother and I in the future!!


Franklin said...

Way to make everyone jealous. I just went out Saturday (on a party boat) and I couldn't believe how the snapper were biting. Everyone on the boat hit their limit, with some kingfish and grouper landed as well. Just a great day, and my first Gulf fishing experience. I'll definitely be back for more...

Sharon Corpuz said...

I really love fishing


Post a Comment