Suzanne Lindgren

Strummer, my two year old, finally got a line in the water. He’d been curious for a while, after seeing a few people fishing on the lake — and watching one of them catch an actual fish.

At first I thought it was a passing interest. Yes, he was talking about fish. But he talks plenty about vegetables without wanting to eat a single one. 

I realized he was serious after he spotted his dad’s fishing rod hanging in “the boathouse” (a glorified storage shed, really). And although it was the first fishing pole he seen up close, he knew exactly what it was for.

He wanted to hold it, but it was high on the wall. There was a hook on it and I wasn’t in the mood to tempt fate. I told him he’d have to convince his father to take him fishing. Matthew, a practiced angler, currently spends most of his free time mowing our lawn.

So days passed. Strummer’s interest in the fishing pole only grew.

Saturday, I was weeding the garden and he was tooling around. Quite suddenly he emerged from the boathouse, pole in hand.

When I went to move whatever it was he’d climbed on to reach it, I didn’t see anything. Must’ve gotten a little help from the fairies.

Whatever the circumstances, his desire to haul aquatic life to shore was clear. Sunday, finally, the stars aligned. Meaning, I guess, the lawn was mowed. So Matthew brought him out to the dock for a fishing adventure.

Their timing was excellent. The bugs were out and the fish were biting. With Matthew’s help the boy caught three fish in about 10 minutes. All was pure glee.

It started sprinkling. They kept fishing. I got a little time in the garden (finally starting to look like more than a collection of weeds).

Then the line broke. The sprinkles grew to raindrops. 

We persisted. Matthew started to fix the line while Strummer and I went in search of more worms.

The rain grew harder still and, water streaming into my eyes, I gave up digging and brought the boy inside.

By all accounts the outing was a success. Until Strummer realized it was over. And that’s when I recognized it for what it really was: the lead up to an epic tantrum, punctuated by an attempt to run outside mid wardrobe-change (him, not me). 

Sometimes you really can’t win. But at least we know for sure now, the boy loves fishing.

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