The First One

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Humor  |  House: Booksie Classic
This is about spending the day on the lake with the family, and being the lucky one.

Submitted: December 03, 2011

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Submitted: December 03, 2011



The First One


Back and forth, back and forth, the boat rocks unsteadily as it hits the waves. Sitting in the hot, blistering sun, the smell of sun block and seaweed fills the air. As I sit down and start to prepare my pole, I hear, “Splash!” I look and see the expanding ripples that are left in the water. This means that it is out there, and near by. Hopefully we have chosen the right spot. Digging through the container of moist dirt, I feel the slimy worm crawling and grab it. Twisting the worm up, I stab it; on the hook it goes; the bait is now set.  Spending a day with the family is great, and anticipation builds of who will be the lucky one; who will catch the first fish of the day?

A cool breeze blows through the air, and the boat rocks harder. We look, and a speed boat races by, pulling a kid on a tube behind the wake. Everybody hangs on so they won’t fall out of the boat. Getting ready to cast, I put the rod over my shoulder. Aiming, I thrust the rod forward and release the trigger. The line flies; the hook sinks into the water, worm and all. Now the waiting begins, and the anticipation of who will catch the first fish keeps building. Just as I start to get comfortable, my son says, “Mom, I’m hungry.” I turn to the cooler and get some sandwiches out. As soon as I turn my back, it happens. He yells, “You have a bite!”

I turn around to grab the pole, being careful not to jerk it, and I feel the slight tugging. Pulling up the pole, I feel something snag on the hook. Slowly I reel in, fighting with a fish. Trying to let it tire itself out, I release some line, and then reel in again. After battling with it for some time, the fish jumps out of the water! That means it is getting close to the boat! “I got it! Get the net!” I exclaim with excitement. I guide it into the net. This fish is mine now!

Now it is in the boat. “It’s a really big one!” my son says. The fish flops around, trying to free itself. It feels cold and wet in my hands. “Wow, it sure is slippery,” I say picking it up after dropping it on the floor of the boat . Using the pliers, twisting, and pulling, and with some effort the hook comes out of its mouth. It seems to look at me, as if it is begging for help, its gills working overtime. I throw it into the live well, where it will stay and think it’s safe in the water again; which it is…for now.  The others will catch some, and I catch more. By the end of the day there are many fish. The joy of claiming the first catch of the day is mine and mine alone.

It is my turn to clean the fish. After slicing off the meat with a sharp knife, I pull the guts out,  until all that is left are the head and bones. “That’s gross Mom, stop playing!” the kids say as I stab the fish in the eye with the knife and playfully push the skeleton towards them. I rinse off the meat of the fish, and chill it until I’m ready to cook.

Getting the heavy pan out, I lick my lips as my mouth starts watering. The pan gets hotter, and the oil starts to spatter. After sliding the filet in the pan, it begins to sizzle. The strong aroma is what fills the air now. I will let it cook until it’s a beautiful golden brown. I put the fish on a plate, and add some french fries. Oh, it looks so appetizing. My stomach growls, as if it knows what’s coming next.

As I take the first bite, it’s melts in my mouth. It’s delicious, and unexpectedly satisfying, especially after such a long hot day. Perhaps the satisfaction comes from not only catching the fish, but the fact that mine was the first catch of the day. As my tummy gets full, I enjoy the praises of a job well done. We start planning the next trip, and I can’t wait.  I love spending the day out on the lake with the family; the whole time I’m hoping I will be the one who catches that first one again.


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