New Year Eve Party

New Year’s Eve of 1981 was a memorable event because we, the three couples that collectively owned the bay house in Bayou Vista; Jim and Shellie Masters, my brother-in-law and his wife, Jim and Pat Buck and my ex-wife and I, decided to jointly put on a big New Year’s Eve party at our beach house.

The party was a success and rolling along, but by 10:00 PM I had lost interest in all of the small talk and went down stairs to sneak me a dip. Sitting on the boat dock, I heard the unmistakable “pop” of a trout hitting the surface of the canal right out from me. “Pop”, another one hit. Up in a flash I ran into the ground floor of the house, grabbed the closest rod and reel, this one with silver spoon and a yellow, bucktail.

The only light was from a full moon overhead as I whipped a cast almost across the canal, began a rapid retrieve, “Whamo” a good trout nailed the spoon and the fight was on! Standing on the dock, at least three feet above the water level, it finally dawned on me, how, without a long handled landing net, was I going to land this fish? In my haste I had forgotten to bring out a net! Swinging and flopping the trout out of the water up on to the yard, I ran over to it, got the hook out, carried it inside and put it into a forty-eight quart cooler, sans ice.

Back outside, this time with a long handled net, casting out again, another “Whamo”, another solid trout, which I subdued, netted and added to the cooler, just as Jim Buck came downstairs asking, “Brother-In-Law, are you OK? I thought you may have fallen in,” as he saw me putting the fish into the cooler.

He rushed inside, grabbed another rod and reel, this one with a M-52 Mirror Lure attached and made a cast. We caught four more specs before the school moved on, all nice fish, two to two and one-half pounds. We got some ice out of the downstairs fridge, covered the fish with it, washed our hands and went back upstairs to the small talk.

Nobody else missed me but Jim.