Aside from my attempt at ice fishing, I haven’t been fishing in years. The last time I went was while visiting my husband’s family in Florida and it involved loading up the boat, stopping for gas, stopping for bait, launching the boat, motoring out to a spot, fruitlessly fishing, going to another spot, etc, until we ended racing back home ahead of a rapidly approaching storm. It was overall a fun day–any day on the water is a fun day–but it also was everything I remember disliking about fishing: extended set up, being trapped or hours, being at the whim of the weather. I used to go fishing with my dad all the time as a kid and loved it. As an adult, and especially as a parent, the thought of all that rigmarole was just exhausting.
So a couple of years ago when my husband started taking the kids fishing, I sent them forth with my blessing. A few quiet hours in the house alone while he dealt with all the fuss and bother? It was an excellent deal. Then last summer the kids decided they wanted to take me fishing, so I set my teeth and went. We all got into the truck and drove five minutes down the road, Everyone got out, they grabbed their poles, and they…fished. That was it. None of the endless set-up, none of the fussing over boat launching, no lure switching or bait buying, just get out and fish. I called it road fishing and I could get into that.
This year, for the first time in memory, I got my fishing license just so I could try road fishing. It was just as glorious as I’d expected. Sure, it’s no peaceful escape back to nature, but we were able to cram fishing between a game of mini-golf and building a new garden bed and that has it’s own charm–especially when you are dealing with short attention spans.
In the span of about 30 minutes, we were able to work on the following skills:
- casting basics
- management of lines when fishing in close proximity
- untangling fishing lures from nearby bushes
- how to safely handle a hook when removing pond muck
- picking up fishing line other people leave laying around because it can entangle wildlife and also certain clumsy forty-year-old women
- how to safely store your pole
All this without any extra nonsense. We didn’t catch anything, but that’s really beside the point with most kid fishing, isn’t it?
I am absolutely down with this. Bring on the family fishing.