Saturday, December 31, 2005

I Miss My Dad

I have a plant in my office at work that I’ve had since May of 1986. I remember the date I got it because the people with whom I work sent it when my Dad died. It was a small green Fichus plant but now almost twenty years later; it is over 8 feet tall. I’m afraid to bring it home because there are pulp wood cutters that live in our neighborhood and I fear that they might break into our house to harvest the Fichus.
I miss my Dad….As I sit here alone in my office at home working, there are squirrel’s outside doing an acrobatic circus act just for me. Dad loved the outdoors. He spent every possible moment outside fishing, hunting, or simply hiking. Catching fish or “getting a buck” really was not that important to him because being outside communing with nature is where he found peace.
He could read, but with only a 5th grade education, he never acquired a love of books, and traveling was rarely an option unless it was work related so he spent his spare time on the Warrior River, or in the Sipsey Wilderness, or up on Smith Lake. Later in life, he had the opportunity to buy a small lot on the Warrior where he built a cabin. Our family spent many enjoyable weekends there. He taught me to water ski and to handle a boat and how to fly fish.
Before he died, he gave me his fly fishing rod and reel. I kept them in the barn until this past summer. For some reason I got fed up with technology so I got out the fly fishing gear, cleaned and oiled the reel and put on new state of the art fishing line. The spillway just below Smith Dam is only about fifteen minutes from my house so Buddy (my fearless K9) and I went there to wet a line. The water coming out of Smith Lake is cold as an iceberg but in August, it felt great to be standing there waist deep in crystal clear water. I promptly feel on my butt on a slick rock and soaked my old digital camera, my cell phone, my pager and my watch. Oh well, every day’s a school day. I laid the stuff on a rock to dry in the warm sunshine. I heard some old timers just down stream in a boat chuckle at my mishap, but I didn’t care. It was almost as if my father was there with me….he would have said “don’t mind them every fisherman worth his salt has busted his ass on a slick rock.” I smiled at the thought and waded further into the water.
As I fell into the rhythm of casting the weightless fly, time seemed to stand still. I looked up and saw a great blue heron glided effortlessly down the stream and all was good with the world. I didn’t catch any trout, but that didn’t matter to me because for those few hours out casting in that stream made me feel close to nature.....and closer to my Dad.

1 comment:

  1. Anonymous12:37 PM

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