Once upon a time a prompt like this would have had me writing 10000 words but not today. I used to like fishing, from a teenager I was always interested in standing by the waters edge with a rod in hand and waiting for a fish to take the bait. I don’t remember what age I was when we got our first boat but the lure of the boat was even more magnetic, but of course busy parents and a busy life meant we didn’t get to go out in the boat too often.
When I was ten we had our first real success as fishermen, we didn’t take the boat on holidays because it was a place we hadn’t been before and Dad wanted to test the place out before dragging our boat 600ks, fair enough out boat at the time was a big old hunk of fibreglass that weighed a tonne and was a prick to manoeuvrer. We hired one of those little putt putt boats, the kind they deliberately make go slow so people can’t get too far away. Well of course we misjudged time because the fish were biting and biting well and by the time we pulled our little boat, with “Daylight hours only” emblazoned on the side, up to the jetty there was no sun in the sky.
This was before mobile phones and when we rocked up to the jetty we hear, “We were just about to send out a search party for you.” To which our reply was “We were catching fish.” After seeing what we had in the boat the guy then made one promise and sure enough the following Monday there was a story in the local paper about a holidaying young family who caught 35 fish in a single afternoon. Of course as fisherman we refused to tell anyone where we caught them.
Since then I have fished from a surf beach, fished from the river bank, fished off a bridge, gone prawning in the dead of night and even tried game fishing. We’ve had our success and our failure and it’s hard to pick a best simply because they were all different and great for different reasons.
But then I pretty much gave up fishing because I met my wife and things changed. Although she never stopped me going, fishing just never seemed a priority with her around. I still went a few times, we even went away as a family, but fishing just wasn’t the same for me. Then our first daughter was born. Now don’t get me wrong I’m not saying my wife is incapable of ANYTHING, but without a drivers license and living in regional Australia I always prepared to drop everything and be the taxi driver, I told her this many times and although there was sometimes other options available I saw it as my job, even more so when our daughter arrived.
I almost stopped drinking, cold turkey, because I didn’t want to risk being over the limit if I was needed to take my daughter to hospital or the doctors. Of course that fear was unfounded, I know that now but at the time my wife berated me for such thinking. I guess her comments were innocent, not meant to harm but that didn’t change the fact that doing what I thought was right copped me a mouthful.
Comments aside fishing of course took another back seat, I had no intention going away for weekend fishing trips and leaving my wife and daughter without transport (and because I would miss them). My wife said on several occasions that she would be ok, and I knew she would, she said that my mother would be around if she needed her, but inflicting my mum on myself is hard enough I don’t like inflicting her on others.
So I essentially stopped fishing altogether, but I didn’t miss it. I missed truck driving when I couldn’t do it and I missed farming when I couldn’t do it but I didn’t miss fishing. As much as my wife told me to and told me often in direct harsh tones that I should just go fishing and shut dad up I just didn’t want to go and leave her and our daughter. Things didn’t change when our second daughter was born, in fact they probably intensified as I wanted to be home for all three and the fishing bug had well and truly left the building.
Since then we’ve had two trips away, one I was sick for and although I went out fishing with dad I spent the entire time with stomach ulcers (which I didn’t know until a few days later) and laying across the boat which just pissed dad off. The second time I just couldn’t find any interest in getting in the boat in preference of actually doing things with my wife and kids, things we had been neglecting to do for too long Dad was still pissed off.
So although you wont ever read this Dad here is the reason why I don’t want to go fishing.
YOUR grand kids are my priority.
YOUR grand kids are my biggest concern.
We don’t do enough family things with YOUR grand kids as it is, going away fishing does not help that.
YOUR grand kids are not interested in fishing, they are interested in time with their family be it at home or near a lake.
As you so often bloody tell us YOUR grand kids are important, but they are important to me too so back off with your bloody demands and pissy attitudes about not getting your own way.
Oh and the big one.
You might not care about keeping your daughter in law happy but I DO, and while she has never stopped me going fishing I would rather spend time with her in silence than time in a boat fishing with you. Harsh it may be but just like you conveniently forgot you had kids when were were growing up, I conveniently forget I have other family members when my wife and kids are involved, even if it doesn’t look that way.