Here Fishy, Fishy, Fishy

When I was a small boy growing up in Idaho, my Grandpa Summers used to always take me fishing. That in itself would have been admirable and put my Grandpa in the hall of fame for grandparents. But he didn’t stop there. He would take all of my cousins with him. In all, there were 12 of us at the time. The one stipulation he had was that we had to be potty trained before we were allowed to go. Grandpa would load all of us up along with camping gear and tents and off we would go. We would stop at a small general story along the way to pick up worms and food for the trip. We kids were allowed to pick out whatever food we wanted to eat for the trip. Grandpa would get to the counter with a basket full of candy and marshmallows. Somehow, he would always hide a package of hot dogs somewhere that we couldn’t see so that we had something without sugar for one meal. We would then travel to our fishing spot and make camp. Once all of the tents were put up, grandpa would take a single pole and make his way to our fishing hole. He would bait the hook and cast the line into the water. All of the children would line up single file behind him along the bank. While grandpa attempted to hook a fish, it was our responsibility to call them into our hook. There stood 12 small children each with their hands to their mouths calling at the top of their lungs, “Here Fishy Fishy Fishy!” When a fish was hooked, the first child in line would go to grandpa and be allowed to reel in the fish. They would then move to the back of the line and everyone moved up one position. These were wonderful times that I shall always remember. On our trip to Idaho this summer, I went to see my grandfather who is now in his eighties. I invited him to go fishing once more though this time with my children. His heart rose into his throat and his eyes glistened. All the way up to where we would be fishing, he would tell me stories from his childhood and from mine, reminding me of details I had long forgotten. In the hour’s drive, I was able to relive a lot of experiences that time had hidden from me. When we finally arrived, I began to bait hooks and cast the line into the water. As I stood there with grandpa and my kids, I explained the procedure for fishing just as it was explained to me some thirty years ago. Before long, my children were lined up behind their great grandfather, each with their hands to their mouths. Familiar sounds were once again heard at the banks of the water, “Here Fishy, Fishy, Fishy!”

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