Fishing for Family

A look at how fishing has brought my family closer together all year round, but mainly during the winters.

12/22/20233 min read

silhouette photography of toddler fishing on body of water
silhouette photography of toddler fishing on body of water

I remember fishing as a child all year round, but mainly during the winter. It felt different, more enjoyable. The summers in Texas are hot, and getting hotter every year. We(my family and I) are not great fishermen by any means. We don't catch much, and when we get nibbles, we often can't get the fish on the hook. I guess they are just better at the game than we are. That, or catching just doesn't mean that much.

In hindsight, I think that's what it really was. Catching fish is not the real reason we went out there in the first place. It was to spend time together, putting distance between us and the rest of the world for a couple of hours at a time. Today, its one of the best ways we can think of to disconnect in a world way too connected. We carry computers in our pockets, and are constantly alerted to check the latest notification. Its not an accident that they come in right when you are taking some time away from it.

I grew up in a single family home, only ever knowing 1 parent, my mother. She had no choice but to try to fill both roles. She nurtured us, and taught us things that sometimes fall to the male figure in the family. One of those skills was fishing. Fortunately, fishing doesn't require all that much. Its basically a rod, a place with fish if you actually want the chance to catch something, some bait, and lots of patience. The great thing is that if you are lacking in patience, you will gain some real quick!

The most expensive thing on the list is a fishing rod. Fishing can be expensive, and back then, it was a little harder to find cheaper ones. Today you can go on amazon and find an inexpensive starter kit for next to nothing. Please never buy the most expensive equipment thinking it will magically make you better, because that is rarely the case.

We were very poor growing up, so my mom would usually get ours from a pawn shop. Its still not a bad option, if you know what to look for. For bait, we just used the little hot dogs in a can. I think they are called Vienna sausages if I remember correctly. I'm pretty sure the fish ate them, and didn't just take it off the hook to frustrate us. In terms of where to fish, we usually just visited local parks that were stocked a couple of times a year, but the most enjoyable times were when we made the 2.5 hour drive to the beach. Again, we didn't have a lot of money, so we would take bologna and cheese with a loaf of bread, and very rarely ate out. We also didn't book a motel(cheaper than a hotel), and just slept in or on the car. You read that right, we sometimes slept on the car.

These might sounds like tough times, but they are in the past, and helped shape who we are today. Sometimes, all you need is what you have.

Today, we enjoy a little more comforts like warm jackets, hotel rooms, and hot meals. If we travel to fish today and don't feel like staying at a hotel, we pack the trailer and setup a tent. We sometimes take our boat, but not always. It really depends on what we want to accomplish, which is never catching the most fish possible. I don't think we've ever caught more than 3 fish on any outing. We go for the time together. That's the goal, and the only one that matters. If we catch a fish, we celebrate together. Its simply the cherry on top of the cake we're building as a family.

When was the last time you got out as a family? What was the activity?

black fishing rod and body of water during golden hour
black fishing rod and body of water during golden hour