You can’t get there from here

First of all, I want to thank those of you that are still reading my blog. As crazy as it sounds, I got really busy outside the house building and making things. Because the days are so hot and muggy here in Texas, as soon as I get up I get out. The morning was usually the hours when I do my blog. But it is also the coolest time of the day. Therefore, I have been really outside and inactive in my writing.

Some time ago, I bought a new Bass Tracker boat. I wrote about it in my blog. I was very excited about being able to use it. But for the same reason I have not been writing in my blog, I have not been using my boat. Even after I made a Bimini top for it to keep the sun’s rays from burning my skin, the boat still set unused.

Well on 8/21/2015, two days ago, I went to my boat to prepare it to go fishing. As I went through the procedure of checking all the systems on my boat, I found that the cranking battery that starts the engine was dead. Thinking that I had not used the boat for a while, I went and got my charger and connected it to the battery. After several attempts with different chargers, I realize that the battery was dead.

I remembered that the battery came with a warranty. My first thought was that the warranty had already expired. To my delight I still had two weeks left in the warranty cycle. So I immediately called the Bass Tracker boat shop that I bought the boat from and asked them if they would honor the warranty on the battery. The person at the service desk stated that he checked and the boat including the battery was still under warranty. All I had to do was bring the battery in the boat shop and the service desk would check it. If the battery was a bad battery they would replace it on the spot.

The next morning, 8/22/2015, I drove over an hour to Longview Texas and the Bass Tracker boat dealership there. I took the battery into the shop and was met by a service desk person. The first thing that happened was the service person told me that they did not carry that size of battery at the shop at that time. The service person did look at my record and confirm that the battery was still under warranty. The service person told me that he could order a replacement battery for me, but it would take over a week before the battery would arrive. Then the service person told me because my battery was an Interstate battery I could go to the Interstate Battery shop in Longview and that they would exchange the battery as it was still under warranty. I asked the service person to print out the information on the battery to prove that it was still under warranty. The service person then called the Interstate Battery shop to explain my situation. The Interstate Battery shop stated that there was no problem for me to go to their shop to exchange the battery. So I went to the Interstate Battery shop in Longview Texas at about 10 am and was met by the weekend store manager. I took a battery to him and he tested the battery to verify that it was dead. Then he told me that they did not carry that particular size Interstate battery. He also told me that he would be unable to take in the battery at all. He would not give me any kind of value for the battery so that I could add some money to it and buy a better battery. He also stated that he would not order that battery as it was the weakest of the batteries in the interstate line and his shop would not carry it or try to sell it. I reminded the manager that this was an Interstate Battery product and that I thought that there should be some way that they could either give me an allowance for the battery or at least order one for next week. I looked at the manager and said, so what you’re telling me is I can’t get there from here. The manager just smiled and said that he could not help me and that I should go back to the boat shop owner and see if they could help me.

I found this to be most frustrating, Interstate Battery is a large corporation and if nothing else one of their stores should be able to find a way to help me with one of their products. As it turned out, I contacted the boat shop service person and told him that the Interstate Battery people would not help me. The boat shop service person then told me that he would order new battery for me and it probably will come in next week. I reminded the boat shop service person that I had traveled over an hour to get to his shop after contacting him and he said he would exchange my battery. I asked him if there was any way they could to ship the battery directly to my house. The boat shop service person told me that he would talk to his manager and see what could be done, but he doubted that the battery would be sent to my house. So I left Longview Texas and traveled another hour back home, still in possession of my dead boat battery and thinking that there would be no fishing today.

My frustration started to build up as I drove home. So as soon as I got home, I went to my computer and to the Interstate Battery website. I was hoping there will be some place so I could make a comment about my experience at the Longview shop. Well guess what, there is no place on their website to make any complain or make a comment. Even though Interstate Battery is such a large nationwide company, they leave a person like me with no way to voice a complaint or ask the questions.

For those of you who know me, you know that I do not give up. So I looked to my shop and found an old boat battery and I charge the battery. Luckily, the old battery held a charge. So on the next morning I got to go fishing. Now here’s the good part of the story.

While traveling along the middle of the lake I observed a flock of birds diving into the water. I stopped in the water, as you may know a boat has no brakes so I glided to a stop, and I watched the birds dive into the water also noticing some baitfish jumping out of the water. There was a lot of wind on the Lake and so I turned my boat into the wind and cranked up my trolling motor to its highest level. I slowly got up into the area where the birds were still diving into the water. I then threw out my basic crank bait, a rattle trap, and cast it out into the area where the birds were at. I began to catch fish on almost every other throw. After about 30 fish, I quit counting and just enjoy the moment. There I was in the middle of the lake in the middle of the day catching fish left and right. I caught several largemouth bass, stripers, white bass all were big fish. Even as I was fishing there were boats traveling up and down the lake. I thought surely somebody would see me catching all of these fish and join in. But almost like I was invisible, no boat stopped or even seemed to look my way.

I was proud of myself and the fact that I was able to stay on the fish. The boat was rocking heavily back and forth due to the wave action and the baitfish that the birds were eating on keep constantly moving from one position to another. Even so, I was having one of those special moments that fishing stories are made of. The crank bait that I was using, a chrome rattle trap, was so beat up that all the chrome on the side of it had been torn off. Even when I had to stop fishing for about 10 min. to get a large bird nest of line out of my fishing reel, I was able to go back to where the birds were at and catch more fish.

Before long the weather changed and a cold front started approaching the Lake. As I cranked up my motor, with the old battery, I raced to the loading dock along with a lot of other boaters. We were all caught a little off guard by the weather front. The wind from the front made white capped waves and made it challenging to get the boat back on the boat trailer. All in all it was a hell of a day.

Even though the day before was so disappointed the next day was so worthwhile.


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