Today is departure day for the 2009 blackcod and halibut longline season. We had a crew and family breakfast at the harbor yesterday, and then we had a big farewell party for the crew last night.
We haven’t thrown a farewell party in quite a while. We used to have them before each season, but then we got into the habit of celebrating upon the boat’s homecoming instead.
The mood at the party was incredibly upbeat, positive, and celebratory. It was the perfect way to set the tone for the new season, which I have to say I feel really good about. Maybe it is just the joy of moving into spring and relief at being done with the winter crab season and all of the trauma we had here at home—whatever it is, it’s a welcome change.
I want to give a special shout-out to Johnny’s wife, Katie, who made the very long trip north to drop off her husband, and then stuck around for all the pre-season activities. Katie brought two of their three children with her, and it was wonderful watching all of the three-year olds and one-year olds play so well together.
Katie is an admirable gal. Although she’s got a long drive and a long season ahead of her, she was all smiles. She is so proud of her husband for being a commercial fisherman, and she is a strong partner in their fishing family. I know that John must really appreciate her encouragement and excitement toward what he does. Her attitude was refreshing to all of us who have gotten stuck in a bit of a rut lately.
(I’ll be back later today with pictures of the boat’s departure.)