My Winter Break

Aaron Cisneros
My Winter Break
2007 Houston Boat Show - a group of young ones waiting patiently for a bite.
I never expected that my winter break would keep me so busy, yet alone work my first job ever. Recently, I was walking the aisles of our local Academy Store when the manager of the fishing department stopped me and asked if I would like to help out with their kids' fish day. My immediate response was yes, although I still had to get an approval by my parents. The thought of having my first job even if it was only for one day was very exciting. My job would be to assist young children at a catfish pond that would be set up in the store's parking lot.

After getting the green light from my parents, I was off on an early Saturday morning. I was a bit nervous as my mom dropped me off, not knowing what to expect. Yet, the Academy personnel, some of whom I already knew, were very helpful in putting me at ease. They gave me my instructions, and almost immediately I experienced some eagerly and anxious kids ready to catch their trophy freshwater catfish.

My job was to make sure the hooks were baited, net the fish that were caught, and take the fish off the hook. I was able to assist many kids on their catch, and it was a great learning experience for me. There was one little girl that stands out in my mind. She was close to giving up as time was about to expire when all of a sudden this oversize big whiskered catfish decides to take her bait. In all the excitement she displayed, she yanked the rod so hard that one of the eyes popped out of the rod, but I was quick enough to net the overgrown rubber like catfish before it broke her off. Afterward, her parents took pictures of her holding her trophy catfish. What struck me the most was the joy the little girl had on her face. Her face was gleaming, and her smile was from ear to ear. It certainly brought back fond memories of my younger years. It's funny how the older we get it takes bigger and better fish to bring out a smile in us. This little girl could care less what bit at the end of her line; whatever came out of that body of water was enough to make her day. It was a pleasurable experience, and I hope to continue to be a part of events like this one because it feels good to see young children enjoying the sport I love. So in between my day at work, duck hunting, and some grinding days of fishing with my dad and his clients, including washing and preparing my dad's boat for the next day. I never really got to take a break like most of my friends.

No sooner was it time to make our annual trek to the Houston Boat Show. I have been a visitor to the show for the past couple of years, and every year I enjoy it more than the previous year. This year was no exception; the numbers of boats on display were remarkable. There were boats for every water hobby you could think of.

I truly enjoyed walking around and looking at every display, but the best part of the show was meeting new people and seeing old friends. Spending time with friends like Capt. Ken Sabin, Capt. Aubrey Black, and Capt. Ruben Garza is always a barrel of fun, even if the fun is at my expense. Listening to some of the stories and experiences from the Texas Lady Anglers was very entertaining. I also spent a great deal of time at my sponsor's booth, Laguna Rods, chatting at length with Jode Shupe and Jeff Neu. It was very enlightening. If you have never checked out a Laguna, I can personally say they are remarkable rods and tough to beat.

Attending a boat show can be very exciting and educating even for us young individuals. It's a good place to meet people and keep up with what's new. It seems a Boat Show can bring out the best in everyone from the joy in purchasing a new boat to buying that trophy catching lure. As you walk, you can see people greeting others, and it's not uncommon to hear of big fish stories being told. It's funny though, out on the water everyone seems to take on a transformation of putting on their serious face.

The Houston Boat Show is the beginning of many shows to come. They are fun for all ages, and most have a fish pond for the kids to enjoy. If you are looking for a great way to meet new people, see old faces, buy some fish catching lures, purchase a new rod, or even looking into buying a new boat, a boat show is a good place to start. At the end of February, I will be attending the Holder Fishing Show for a couple of days, I am really looking forward to the show, and I hope to see you there.