The Washington Times-Herald

Columns

April 14, 2012

Time together always priceless

WASHINGTON — “. . . she thinks we’re just fishin’.”  So goes a line in a popular country song. The song is about a dad and his small daughter going fishing and the daughter tells her dad about her kitten, her clothes, things she likes. The dad gets to share time with his daughter, learning about her ideas and what is important to her while the daughter thinks they are “just fishin’.”

I used to take my kids fishing when they were young. My husband traveled a lot for the company, helping sister newspapers with press problems during several of those years so he didn’t get to go with us very often.

He wasn’t real fond of fishing anyway, but he went along when he could. I grew up loving to go fishing with my dad so I tried to take my kids whenever time permitted.

There were several places near where we lived that were good fishing spots. So, we packed snacks and drinks or maybe a picnic lunch, depending on how long we intended to be gone. Sometimes we would go after work and school for an hour or two. Sometimes we went on Saturday and spent several hours.

We spent the time together, talking, enjoying nature. I learned about my children’s friends, favorite things, dreams, dislikes. . .

 Sometimes we caught fish worth keeping, but most of the time we just had fun and enjoyed being together. My daughter occasionally took a book to read instead of her rod and reel, but we were still together and the conversation just might be more important than the book.

My kids learned to bait a hook, use a crappie jig and have patience. They learned to cast a line without tangling it in a limb, weeds or another person. They learned to gently handle a wriggling fish and when to release it kindly back into the water. They learned to avoid catfish whiskers that could stick a hand like an icepick and that creek water was fine for rinsing fish scum from hands.

They learned to avoid getting too close to the pond if they didn’t want to wear wet shoes and socks ‘til we got home. They learned that cheese and crackers and cold pork and beans make a nice lakeside meal.

 They learned that enough silver dollar size crappie and sun perch fillets will make a decent meal. They learned the thrill of a feeding frenzy when the fish were so enthralled with whatever was tossed in the water they were almost taking bare hooks.

My son told my husband a while back that those times when I took the kids fishing were some of his favorite memories and he wanted to create memories like that with his own kids.

I didn’t realize when we were making those memories that “just fishin’” could be so important.

Those memories were not expensive. We just invested a little time.

But, that time together was precious and priceless and it still is.

•••

Cyndi Pratt remembers fondly the times spent fishing with her dad. She remembers  hand digging garden worms for bait and using a cane pole. She remembers a 2-foot-long rod and reel her dad gave her that was “just her size.”

 She also remembers — not so fondly — wading through waist high weeds to get to a pond and the subsequent chigger bites.

1
Text Only
Columns
  • Learning from the examples of Jesus I was reminded again on Thursday night at our church's Maundy Thursday service about humility and obedience. As part of the traditional service, we not only take part in communion, but have a foot-washing service. On the evening before his death, Jes

    April 19, 2014

  • The past is prologue When I left Bankers Life Fieldhouse on Saturday, I watched a lot Barr-Reeve leave depressed and disappointed. The Vikings had lost a heartbreaking Class A final and I think a lot of people were wondering how and why. I'm not sure if either question n

    April 1, 2014

  • A Viking team to remember All roads lead to where you stand. And today, the Barr-Reeve basketball team will find themselves at center court of the Class A State Finals. Whether they win or lose is now irrelevant, as their legacy has already been written. This team will be rem

    March 29, 2014

  • Those hard working worms When the word "worm" comes up in conversations, there is often a wide range of ideas as to what people think about worms. Someone may think of a worm as a creepy, crawly thing that wiggles around in the earth, that young boys used to tease young gir

    March 25, 2014

  • Long live the Big East It first started when I was a student at Indiana University in Bloomington and I didn't quite understand. Most of my friends and people I would meet while watching college basketball wondering how on earth I couldn't be a crazed Hoosier fan, despite

    March 22, 2014

  • Twigs give Leatherwood its name One of our lesser known Indiana shrubs also has a rather unusual name. This is the leatherwood. A usually short shrub, it only grows to a height of around six feet, leatherwood receives its name from the soft leather-like twigs that extend out from t

    March 18, 2014

  • 'Old-school' sharing found in different ways The concept of sharing has taken on a new meaning since I was supposed to have learned it many years ago. What we all know, or supposed to be taught, was to let others take part in your good fortunes. When we all learned about sharing, it was over ou

    March 15, 2014

  • How far was Hooterville from Walton's Mountain? I have always said that television is the one item that binds my generation together (the generation that still watches televison, talks on phone and asks people for directions instead of using one device for all three). And with that in mind, it ma

    March 8, 2014

  • Time to seed the state tournament

    The Indiana boys basketball state tournament got underway Tuesday night as the most exciting month in high school began. As the old saying goes, "In 49 other states, it's just basketball, but this is Indiana." With that in mind, the IHSAA needs to to take a long look at seeding the state tournament.

    March 7, 2014

  • The pen is mightier than the sibling GD (Grand Dad) came to town for a visit recently and before he left I heard him ask Ava if she would to write something for his newspaper back home. She said she would but I could tell by the look on her face that she didn't really want to. She was p

    March 6, 2014