Not specifically white bass, but you guys are my people. I tried to be a good dad today. The weather was perfect this morning to chase white bass, which have been surfacing in acres of schools in the morning, and I had some hybrid spots I wanted to check on. But a few days ago, when I asked Caleb if he wanted to go fishing on Friday, this, morning, he enthusiastically said “Yes! But I want to fish at the dock.” What? I thought, well, I’ll fail to mention he said that, or talk him out of it, when it’s time to go.
Those thoughts weighed on me all week though. I mean he’s seven years old, I need to validate and empower his initiative, right? But I want to go catch more, bigger fish with the visual stimulation of the top water action! And won’t he end up liking that more I tried to convince myself. Finally, partly honestly due to not feeling like getting the boat out, I decided (reluctantly gave in) to Caleb’s plan.
Friday, and he’s ready to go fish. In fact, somehow it played out that he was the fishing guide and that when we went to Wal Mart to get worms and hooks, he would pay with his own money and I could pay him back. We had a good discussion about how to calculate his guide price, pretty good deal for me at his derived price of $25. Somehow though he later came up with a dollar a fish, including the ones he caught. Just like a guide! So now I’m on the hook for $35, though I took some out for the Chick Fil A he had to have on the way home.
We have mostly skipped over this kind of simple fishing, just dropping worms in shady spots around boat docks. But there are so many great basic fishing lessons learned; knowing the fish, reading the water, when to set the hook, when to move spots or stay, dealing with frustration when the other guys are catching and you are not, being patient between bites, being patient when the whining starts, being patient when dad wants us to catch just one more fish, etc…. I had to keep in mind, we will be out on the boat again soon, or the beach with the big rods out, and we will both be better fisherman because of trips like this one.