Gabe and I did a lot of fishing as kids. We want our kids to enjoy similar experiences. I was fortunate that our family owned a cottage on one of the Finger lakes. Night-crawlers were free from the yard (we’d saturate the yard early evening and go searching with flashlights at night) and I could fish right from the dock. I’d occasionally catch minnows (scoop them up in a bucket as they swam in schools near the top of the water surface), crayfish, potato bugs and mussels to use as bait, too. The lake had mostly bass, walleye, pike, pickerel, perch and sunfish. I loved fishing early in the morning when the water was still and crystal clear. It was always nice to see people fishing in their boats then, too. It was fun to talk to them as they were fishing. Any bites? What are you using live bait or lures?

I always found it so peaceful to cast and reel in over and over. Our dock had an orange painted wooden bench to sit on, but I preferred to just stand or sit on the edge of the dock and swing my legs. I remember seeing beautiful birds such a Kingfisher, eagles and ducks with their babies floating by.

I miss the most awesome sunrises and sunsets. Red sky at night, sailor’s delight. Red sky at morning, sailor’s take warning. I miss the sound of the water hitting the pebble beach, too. I spent hours gathering pebbles, lake glass and small shells. I stored all of my treasures (including water critters) in an old washing machine drum that was partially submerged in water. I’d save the best flat rocks for skipping. Because of course, some are better than others. Sometimes, I’d write secret wishes on them with other flat rocks and toss my dreams into the water.

I hope one day I can make fishing more soulful for my kids. Clearly, river fishing under a bike trail bridge isn’t quite the same experience. I know we could take them all sorts of different places to fish or even rent a boat to make it more fun. But visiting places isn’t the same as living there.

I’m mentally writing on a flat slate pebble and tossing it into the water. My pebble wishes used to come true much more often than birthday, wishbone, necklace clasp, lady bugs, stars and dandelion wishes. One of my dandelion wishes waited decades to come true. And it was a mighty wish.

There’s hope.

Until then, we’re doing just fine.

The fish weren’t biting with all the talking and carrying on. Little voices carry like thundering echoes under a bridge. I took Zachary, Matthew and Ally to a nearby park. Miranda stayed to fish with Gabe. She was catching fish with each cast and caught 6 total. Ally decided to go back and fish again. She caught a couple, too. Sadly, she had to witness the hook through a fish eye. Yuck. Hopefully, Zachary will give fishing another try soon. He has gone fishing a few times before, but probably doesn’t remember the thrill of a fish giving just enough of a fight to make it fun and exciting.

The pics of the fish the girls caught were taken by Gabe with his phone.