Fishing in our family hasn’t been a major project down through the years. Any that we DID was just a hobby - not exactly professional.
I’m talking about our earlier family years - not later. In HIS earlier ADULT years, Jim was a serious fisherman. He had all the trappings, with expensive rods and reels. He even went with some friends to Canada to fish. I haven’t seen him do much of that in recent years.
What I want to write about, though, is the “amateur” fishing - that I do, and some others also.
I did buy a rod and reel one time, and did do some “angling”, I suppose you could call it. But I have always been very weak in the fishing area.
One time, Jean and Leah (Jean’s oldest sister) and I went fishing at the Clarence J. Brown Reservoir here at Springfield. Leah had done a lot of fishing at Toledo.
Fishing right alongside the bank, we sat on “lawn chairs”. One time, my line got tangled on the rocks, and reaching over to free it, I, and my lawn chair, went headlong into the drink. I’d never seen Leah laugh so hard. Right behind her in laughter was Jean. Messy! (We DO have a picture, if I haven’t thrown it out!)
One of the times we visited Leah in Toledo many years ago, we went fishing in a local creek. Jimmy and Johnny (I think maybe 9 and 6 years old) had cane fishing poles, standing along the bank of the creek.
There hadn’t been much “fish biting” activity, when, suddenly, Johnny’s pole dipped, indicating he had a bite. He properly pulled up the pole right away, and there was a “crawdad” on his line. Jimmy looked at it and said, “Oh…a lobster!”
“MONSTER!!?”, Johnny said. He threw the pole in the creek, and ran back up the bank. Funny!
Last Thanksgiving, I went to Florida to be with my granddaughters Kelly and Jodi and their families. Kelly’s husband, Ben Farmer, is a truly “avid” fisherman. He fishes in the ocean, the Indian River, gravel pits, wherever fish roam. And, he knows what he’s doing! He’s caught all kinds of fish - including small sharks. (But NOT while I’m with him!)
The Saturday after Thanksgiving, Ben took us all fishing - I think in the Indian River, running parallel to the ocean, but inland. You can see me here, contentedly “fishing” along the rocks. That’s Ben standing with the pole; Rylan down front, and Kelly hiding behind me. I didn’t catch anything!
However, our granddaughter Jodi - “lucky” as she was - caught a small Sting Ray. See it here? (You notice how “derisively” I say “lucky”?) Fish? I couldn’t catch a cold!
When Jodi was just a “pre-teen”, I think, we took her fishing many times in the “reservoir” near Springfield. We, that is to say “she”, caught some small crappies. I did pull in a crawdad, one time.
Jean’s dad, Grandpa Anderson, fished a lot in his later retirement years. He knew what he was doing as well. He fished in some ponds near Mechanicsburg.
I don’t recall ever going fishing with my parents - or any of my family. And, though most of them ATE fish, I suppose, I didn’t touch fish to eat until Jean got me to go to Long John Silver’s, maybe 30 years ago.
I’m heading to Florida again this week, to visit again Kelly, Ben, Olivia and Ethan. (Jodi and Rylan moved to Springfield in February.) My guess is that Ben will take us out to the water again. I will TRY to bring in a “whopper”. (Or else, “tell a whopper”, whichever.)
It takes a lot of patience to be a fisherman. You have to do it for more reasons than just “bringing in a fish.” I’m told that many fishermen do it just for the “fun” of it; the “relaxation” of it; the “thrill” of it; or even, the hopeful “bragging” of it, I suppose.
And, though it’s fun for the whole family to fish together, there is the matter of an individual, just by him/herself, fishing, meditating, praying even.
Any fishing I did as a kid involved “night crawlers”. Now, Ben goes to the “bait shop” and gets shrimp, or minnows or whatever - almost professional. And, he knows how to do it!
I hope (I WANT to say “pray”) that Ben will get a “big one” while I’m there with them. I can’t wait to see him “haul one in” - grunting and smiling all the way. (Fisherman heaven?) I’ll do my best to haul out my trusty BlackBerry and take a picture of the fish (Ben too, of course).
Ya’ll wish me a “Happy Vacation” now! Ya heah?
By the way, guess how many postings I've made on this blog! Unbelievably, this is number 70!
Whew! That's a lot of "gabbing"!