Today, I am going to our local Wal-Mart and purchasing my state fishing license. In the state of Georgia, reagular fishing license are $9.00. There is an extra $5.00 tacked onto that if you want to fish for trout. My interests fall more on catfish, bass, and brim, but after a chat with my friend Joshua today, I think I will get the trout addition. He tells me he will go fly fishing with me sometime soon and get me trained in the sport. I will be looking forward to spending time fishing with Joshua.
At the present time, I don’t have a place to go fishing for catfish in the area. Back home, there was a place called Presnell’s Catfish Farm. There had to have been seven or eight separate ponds. One large one, in the center, was my favorite spot. When I was a child, my dad used to get irritated with me and was sure I would never grow up to be a fisherman. He would throw in, sit almost on his heel, and wait. Waiting, for him, seemed almost unnecessary. The fish knew he had cast his lure and they were ready to pounce upon it. Dad would do this slight raise…steady as a guy could while dipping Skoal…then yank the hell out of the rod, shouting, “Ah, yeah. C’mon..Ha Ha!” The rest of the family would sit there while he cranked on his Zebco 808 reel, whining from the pull of the massive catfish he was fighting.
Compared to my dad, my trips fishing consisted of sitting there, watching an orange cord float in a large pond. To an eight year old child, that is not the most exciting of times. At least not me! Dad would constantly say, “Watch the cork, son. If you don’t pay attention, you won’t catch nothin’.” I knew that. I just didn’t care!
One fishing trip I will never forget is when my friend (lets call him Bob) went with us to the catfish ponds. He had never been taken fishing and had not the slightest clue what to do if the cork went into the water. Dad had cane poles for the younger ones, including me, Bob, and my sister. We sat on the bank and Dad baited the small hooks with crickets. We chucked the lines in and sat down. Dad looked at Bob and said, “Now, when that cork yonder goes under, you snatch the pole so that you can bring that fish to you.” Bob said OK and we were set to fish.
All of a sudden, we see Bob snatch that pole backward. The fish obviously sprouted wings, flew out of the water, and sailed off into the trees across the narrow dirt road behind us. I thought my dad was going to die. He stood up, slapping his hands on his legs, hollering in hysterical laughter. He looked at Bob and said, “You did exactly what I told you to do. That made my day!” We all got a great big laugh at Bob’s expense, but he was happy too. He knew he had caught a fish and that is what mattered most. Dad explained how to pull up more gently on the next event the cork went under.
That story shows fishing can not only be relaxing and a great sport, but it can also be a time full of fun and laughter for the whole family. Children these days should be introduced to outdoor activities. You see so many overweight kids that sit at home and play video games for entertainment. Is it really for the kid’s entertainment, or is it more so that the parents don’t have to be bothered? I personally believe it is the latter. The children of today are being raised by people of my generation. We grew up with Nintendo, Atari, and Sega game systems and the very beginning of the computer gaming age. We knew those were fun and, i guess some more than others, felt the need to pass that onto their children as a way to fill their free time.
Let’s hope something changes before it gets too late.