Falling Out Of The Boat
“There are guides who have fallen out of the boat and those who have not…yet.” quipped my buddy merely a few weeks ago. The day after he spoke those words my son fell out of the boat for the first time. While not exactly a fishing guide, I fall into the not yet category. Until now.
I had been on the sticks all day. My brother was visiting and I was doing my best to get him on fish. After much prodding I was finally willing to give up the oars.
Fishing had been slow, but an aggressive eat caught me by surprise and I was hooked fast to a brown pushing 20 inches. It was the kind of fish that changes your outlook on the day. The wind seemed to calm just a bit and sun became a few degrees warmer. Banter flowed more freely and we continued on our way.
Not five minutes later I found myself being ejected from the boat.
My memory is hazy, but we scraped into some shallows that brought the boat to a sudden halt. Apparently not secured in the locks, my left knee slammed into the gunwale. Momentum had the rest of me heading downstream, no longer accompanied by our trusty vessel. Reflex’s kicked in and I jumped to avoid clipping both legs and face planting in the drink.
To my surprise I stuck the landing and was standing in calf deep water. I get in and out of my boat all the time. But standing arms reach from the skiff, in what should be familiar territory, seemed incredibly weird. Shocked by the sudden turn of events I started to laugh and then doubled over as pain coursed up my leg. While not on the oars at the time, which is a distinction worth noting, I have now officially fallen out of my own boat.