Reeling in the Fun of Fishing
The fun part of making a new friend is having the opportunity to try new things, so when Kim extended the invite to meet her for some fishing, with no questions asked, I replied “sure” to the text. Actually with my reduced vision, xl finger tips and now dealing with an eye floater (google it) I’m surprised spellcheck wasn’t called upon to write something ridiculous like ‘stupor’.
Perhaps she had already exhausted her other contacts and no one surfaced as a viable choice, but considering I regularly awaken around 5:30 I was the next obvious one on the invite list.
So my first concern was “do we still have those rods, last used more than 25 years ago?” Once found, I approached Joe lounging in his FGC (latter words are green and chair) and asked him to check their working order.
An hour later, both antique rods completely disassembled, every tool of my manicure kit tried and heavy sighing heard around the corner and down the street, the bag of parts was tossed on the porch and both rods relegated to the garage.
His solution to the problem? A call to buddy Johnny Cambruzzi, fisherman extraodinaire. (At least we assume he is according to the stories.) I made sure he asked for a beginner rod because I didn’t want to present myself like those weekend athletes who walk, talk, dress and are equipped with the gear of the pros, yet can’t play the game.
With rod in hand and a hunk of Joe’s pancetta (hoped they liked Italian) I set off to meet her with first stop being for coffee. Still having no clue where we were headed we parked the car in the outer rim of Meadowvale Town Centre. Wondering where we were headed I dutifully followed her across the street, along the sidewalk, onto the path through the trees and aha there before our eyes appeared a lake, one not ever studied in my grade 7 geography. The reason being is I doubt this man-made lake was there yet. But Lake Aquitaine was a welcomed and beautiful early morning sight complete with lush vegetarian and an array of lake creatures, some seen, some only heard.
Kim and I had already agreed that at the sight of spiders (her fear) or snakes (mine), we would definitely look out for each other.
Once we arrived at our spot on the dock and laid out our equipment, Kim started with the Fishing 101 tutorial. It was obvious with her pink accessorized Lady Something rod, she was seasoned. And her bait … hotdog chunks, corn niblets and cheese (the latter proved too crumbly for me but it tasted fine).
I proved to be an eager yet slow learner. After repeated attempts and forgetting to release the line, I knew I better pay attention. Releasing too early and I’d snag the reeds behind me and too late and I’d risk snagging one of my body parts. Kim did her best to remain encouraging.
Alas I finally succeeded after relating it to throwing out someone at second base and I watched the line sail off. But then the issue was the weight John had left on the end causing the line to sink to the deep depths of the lake. Numerous failed efforts of collecting lengthy strings of undergrowth and even a 50′ section of someone’s else’s line (I thought that took skill) to untangle, I was slowly getting the hang of it. Oh, and I think I actually hooked Kim’s finger as well … at least she accused me of it as she flaunted the blood.
It spurred me on that Kim had already had a bite. My competitive nature kicked in. Kim 1 – Carole 0 … I couldn’t count the snapping turtle which I fastidiously tried to lose of the hook, cuz she assured me she would not be assisting with unhooking that one.
And then she caught another one. Two behind, I needed to get serious. As I flung it out over the water I envisioned the fishing shows on TV where they fill the stadium with roaring fans as they watch each fish get weighed. I was pumped. Thankfully Kim continued to issue instructions like “lower the line, pull back a bit” and ultimately, “reel it in, you’ve got something.” Cheers all around, I was finally in the derby, although she lead 2 – 1.
I feverishly hooked new bait in hopes of remaining competitive; I tried to get her off her game with random conversation to shake her focus; I even walked further along the dock in hopes to attract new schools. Something worked. Suddenly it was her two catfish to my one catfish and one sunfish, all of which were ecstatic to reclaim their home in the water even though they each sported a new canker sore from the piercing hook.
Time was getting on as the day heated up but the tie had to be broken. Call it beginner’s luck or perhaps it was Kim feeling she should back off as the invitee, but by the time the bait was gone (I really enjoyed the cheese) I was declared the Meadowvale Dock Derby Champion. Okay fine, there was no real derby, I only declared it in my head and there was no prize except she did then buy the next coffee.
Regardless, I reelly enjoyed the outing~!!~
PS special thanks to Kim for her patience, for Joe for his impatience and for calling John to bail him out, making us both look good.