I had the opportunity to witness my dad’s first flats experience this past week down in the Yucatan near Xcalak, Mexico. After a bout with food poisoning, two flights, and a five-hour shuttle ride into rural/coastal Mexico, he was more than ready to get into some fish. Our gracious trip hosts, Dan and John, helped with rigging and final casting instructions. A laid back group of guides got us onto some fish and the rest seems like a blur. A few highlights stick out — the smile and first pump after a landed bonefish; the ear-to-ear grin of the first tarpon to hand, no matter the size; and the sheer chaos that followed the flash of light otherwise known as a barracuda attacking the needle fish fly on the end of my line. It’s an easy rhythm to fall into: wake up, bacon and eggs, the daily boat ride past the Tropic Star, fish all day, come back to drinks and snacks, dinner, sleep, rinse and repeat. A few lessons learned from the trip: you can never have too much gear or too many flies; beware of the exchange rate at Mexican 7-11’s; be prepared for a stop at the “jungle banos” after aforementioned 7-11 stop; 40 lbs wire is significantly stronger than 20 lbs wire; and never underestimate time spent making memories with great friends.