I love to spend the day with my wife, Lisa. She is blond, vivacious, and has the same sick, goofy sense of humor I do. We have been married thirteen years. She is my true long lost love of my life.
Lisa and I travel together better than anyone I know. We are two kindred spirits of like mind in our taste for adventure through the rugged United States. Crisscrossing the map between Tennessee, Colorado, Arkansas, North Carolina, Louisiana, and we drive to all points in between. I rag her about being a blind navigator on a B52 bomber, and she rags me about my demolition derby style of driving.
We would take a day trip to the Texas hill country, stopping first for gas, Dr. Peppers, and pork rinds you know the type, they are salty enough to kill a horse, and hard enough break a crown on your root canal. With our quota of junk food, we head off into the unknown. We have been known to chunk a coin on a map and then go wherever it lands.
We landed on Port Lavaca one Saturday morning and headed off into the blue. Hot black top peeled the tires on a hot August day. She had the map and I had the plan, we were going to go fishing, right off the pier in Lavaca bay.
Lisa and I rolled into town after a long drive through the coastal praire, passing through such venerable towns as Victoria and Goliad. We were exposed to a telling snapshot of Texas history when we lollygagged through Mission La Bahia and the Presidio that guards it. Port Lavaca was a grungy place, a typical Texas fishing town. Lots of blue collar dudes with grease up to their elbows and smelling like the catch of the day, in Port Lavaca you either fish for a living or, are going fishing after you make your living.
We had one problem - no fishing poles. We cruised on over to the Wal-mart, we needed to rectify our lack of angling tools. Walking down the sporting goods isle, we scanned for tackle. First, a rod and reel, second, weights, and hooks. As we were checking out and paying for our stuff, I asked the tall, lean, inbred looking teen behind the counter where the best place to fish was. “In the water” was his reply. I am not the most brilliant bulb in the box (the real bulbs, not those squiggly things that would have Edison spinning in his grave) but I had figured that out already. I wanted to know what part of town was the best.
We had one more stop to make, the bait house. By now Lisa and I are starting to feel like a couple of hillbillies at a black tie dinner. Hurrying to complete our purchase before they guys from deliverance show up, we bought shrimp, shad, and some stink bait. We discovered why everybody in town smelled so good.
The fishing was lame, I have a picture of Lisa proudly holding a tiny croaking dogfish that someone should have shaved and made to swim backwards. Since it swallowed the hook, I had to gingerly cut the sucker in half so I wouldn’t get finned. I get the chills every time I hear the croaking sound of that fish in my dreams. Lisa and I spent the night in a fleabag motel with wood paneling, Captain’s wheel lamps, red shag carpeting, and lots of roaches. I am still in therapy for post traumatic stress disorder from the size of some of those bugs.
We finished off our trip the next day and luckily no further incidents occurred. So, if you like thousand yard stares into your soul and West Virginia inbred types, then Port Lavaca is for you. Watch out for dogfish, and if you see Merle at the sporting goods counter in the Wal-mart, tell him I said hi.