Let me start out by saying that I absolutely LOVED this trip that I am about to share. My mom’s passion for fishing exceeds my own and as far back as I can remember, it is filled with memories of us fishing together. I remember my mom taking me to the fresh water docks in Labelle, Florida. I couldn’t have been more than 4 or 5 years old. I would fish for a little while and after I got bored I would chase ducks with my fishing pole. I would wind that push button Snoopy pole tight to get a good bend in the rod and run at the ducks. When I would get close to them I would push the button and it would flick them right in the duck butt. It was awesome!!! I am totally laughing as I type this.
I have memories of her taking me fishing under the bridges leading out to Cocoa Beach and Cape Canaveral when my brother Dustin was a baby. She would be nursing my brother while helping me rig up, taking fish off my hook, and fishing herself. This was totally embarrassing at 8 yrs old, but reflecting back it is truly amazing. This might be way to much information, but my mom is awesome and she would bend over backwards to take me fishing. My mom loves us kids with all her heart and she loves to fish just as much. I am grateful to her everyday for the fishing life that I get the privilege to live.
Needless to say I get very excited when I get the rare opportunity to take my mom fishing. In December and January when charters are slow, we can substitute income by commercially rod and reel fishing for king mackerel. These are usually the trips I get to take my mom with me on. My mom is phenomenal at this. She can catch them as good as I can and knows how to add drag pressure with her thumb, walk the fish from under the boat, gaff the fish, let the baits back, and hook the fish on the drop back. Overall she is a commercial king fishing bad ass!
On this particular day a sail fish was nice enough to take the bait. Usually we don’t waste the time fighting sailfish because we are trying to make money by selling the king fish and sail fish only hold entertainment value. This was her first sail fish so we had to get it. She fought the fish like a pro and after a long run, several dazzling jumps and tail walks I grabbed the fishes bill and we got a quick picture and let it swim free. She was stoked! What she didn’t know, however, is the tradition that after your first bill fish you get thrown in the water back at the dock. My brother, Captain Dusty, was out on his boat fishing that day also. He knew mom had caught a sailfish so a plan was set in motion to get her. It was a perfect setup. When we got back to Port Canaveral everyone was telling her congrats and she was smiling. At the end of the dock me and Dusty were acting lake we were having trouble getting one of our bait barrels out from under the dock. We wave mom over and I asked her to hold the barrel rope up while we grabbed it. The only dilemma was her expensive pair of polarized sunglasses on her head. It was go time as she grabbed the rope. Dustin pushed her and went for the sunglasses as I hugged her and and made sure she didn’t fight it and land halfway on the dock. It went perfect. Everyone was clapping, pointing and laughing and she was like what the heck was that for.
This was an epic day that provided me with another great memory of my mom that I will always cherish. This is the power of the outdoors and a love of fishing that I want to pass along to my kids. A full circle of great memories. I can promise you mom that this passion will continue in our family throughout time and it will all be traced back to Patricia Knotek. I can already see that your grandchildren have the fishing gene flowing in their blood.Thank you mom for taking me fishing! Our trips and story’s will be timeless!