When I was a kid, my dad bought me a Mickey Mouse rod n reel because I wanted to be “cool” like him. The only rule was I had to learn how to cast it. So that meant we could not go fishing that day, and it made me so mad. You know how people get when they don’t get their way times a seven year old? That was me. Dad said, “That’s ok. You can throw a fit, or you can try. It is up to you!” I have never been one for choices. 😐 You do know right now that I am going to say that I pouted for awhile before I got up to try, right? But I did get up to try. All day I tried. Well, I am pretty sure I probably took some breaks, ate lunch, or something along those lines. Either way, it took me all day to get that little plastic Mickey Mouse head to hit that faded old white bucket. I hated that bucket. By the time I succeeded in that it was too late to go so dad promised for the next time. He kept his promise.
Dad pulled up in our drive way with my MawMaw that Saturday and boy was I ready. I did not even really know what I was ready for! It seemed like twelve hours though before we ever got to the reservoir. I did not know you had to pick up your bait, find the place, pull out the map, get lost some more, and most likely say words you shouldn’t before you arrive; I think that should be written in a fishin guide. Yes, I say fishin, I am from Mississippi. The place was crowded so dad found us a spot right close to the shore. I cast the line, and I waited for what felt like at least 20 minutes. However, it was probably five seconds. I felt something tug at my line and I just started reeling in fighting against this big ole fish (felt like it anyway, I was 7 ok!) on the other side until he maybe she got to shore. It was a big drum fish that is what dad called it. Now, I have no idea what that is nor do I know why I did not keep it and hang it on my wall. My fish today are probably thankful for that. Dad gave that fella or Ms. Fella to our neighbors a little down from us, and we continued on. Dad caught more and I caught zero more.
It’s ok it’s ok, I think by then I had more fun playing in the sand with my sister anyway. I guess maybe I have always chased the rabbits. When we got home, my dad cleaned the fish, Maw fried it, and picked all the bones out for us girls. We ate. We did not choke. The end. No sunburns. All was well. Now, I know you think this story is all about dad and fishin and all that good stuff. Maybe on the surface it is, but i want to focus on the lady I called MawMaw. Most called her Memaw says “oh me” because she liked to say those two words a lot. My brother came up with it when he was trying to tell our two grandmothers apart. The other one had “West Memphis” attached to her name.
I have been thinking about my Maw a lot lately. A few days ago it was her birthday, and I thought about writing all the awesome things I remember about her. I could still do that, but really I just want to say in the chaotic ultra mess that I call a family behind the scenes she was the glue. You want to know something? She didn’t bring a pole that day to the reservoir, and for those of you who know her understand that is a big deal. Instead of fishin, she played in the sand with my sister and I. I do not know why that story was brought to my attention or even really why that little detail is what I am talking about, but maybe she had it figured out. Time does not stop, people change, and moments become moments. Maybe she played in the sand with us so that 11 years later after she is gone I still hold a memory so special. It was not about that ugly lookin fish on the other side of my small yellow Mickey Mouse pole. I can always catch fish. Well, I mean, you know… if they’re biting! I have learned, though I can not always spend time with those that I love. I am thankful today for that little ten dollar fishin pole, never the bucket, that brought us together for a fun filled day of shenanigans and such! I sure do miss her, ya know? I figure if she were here we would catch up on all the cool things the Lord is doing, but I would probably just tell her how Walker Texas Ranger does not come on the TV anymore. She is the only one who would understand how lame that is. I would probably have to explain to her what lame meant. But then she would understand.