Thursday, September 6, 2012

Fly Fishing ~ A River Runs Through My Waders

“Eventually, all things merge into one, and a river runs through it. The river was cut by the world's great flood and runs over rocks from the basement of time. On some of the rocks are timeless raindrops. Under the rocks are the words, and some of the words are theirs." ~ Norman MacLean, A River Runs Through It

It was time.  Time to go.  Go away.  Time to get out, somewhere beyond the baseball fields and Wal-Mart.  Time to spread our wings and fly----fish.  Fly-fish??...
That's how our vacation planning conversations usually go.  We all agree that the future of mom and dad's mental state of being is hinging upon a vacation.  And, a vacation would be fun.  The end.

Being the only female on this ranch, when throwing ideas into the melting pot of opinions, mine are the only ones that seem to melt.  One thing we usually all agree on is traveling somewhere beautiful where we can get out and experience nature.  Then, the planning turns into something like this:

Hey, what about researching the history of (said place)??  We could take in some museums, find a theatre production, eat at a legendary restaurant, meet the locals, (or shop?? she says quietly)....

Blank stares soon breaks into their own special way of sharing their ideas: shouting all at once, like they're on the floor at Wall Street. That's nice, Mom, we were kinda thinkin'...Hunting!....and bears.....and cliff diving.....and s'mores.....beef jerky....and fishing....and camping.....and off road ATV....and wrestling and farting and belching contests and.....

I probably don't have to state that we actually did all of those things, minus the bears and cliff diving. That was more like cliff climbing, really.  I have woke up to the reality that for the next 20 years this little "planning" song-and-dance will most likely be my expectation when it comes to vacations.

As a lover of nature and beauty, I'll admit that our trip this year, though not exactly as I would have planned it, was fun.  The best part for me, anyway, is seeing the boys have such a great time.  And, I was surprisingly surprised at how much I enjoyed our fly fishing adventure.

When Steve came home and told me the WHOLE family was going, that we were going to hike back in to the mountains a couple of miles and then fish, I said, "Okay, crazy-man, did you hire a nanny to help us??"  Nope, no nanny, but we had a couple of guide dudes to show us the way, fix up our lines with the right lures and help keep the non-swimmers from drowning.

Here's a summary of my enlightenment:
1. Fishing far away from other people, in a place where you feel alone in the mountains is a surprisingly surreal feeling. To be able to breathe deeply, to soak in the quiet and enjoy the peace was a welcome escape from the day-to-day stress of life.
2.  Kids don't need all of the crap that they have.  They need curiosity and appreciation for nature, beauty, and the chance to be immersed in it, and make memories in it.

3.  Leaky waders are cold and cause chafing as well as an indescribable longing for a hot bath and a bottle of wine.  That's all I'm going to say about that.
4. The movie A River Runs Through It should not be anywhere in your imagination the first time you try to cast your line and snag the bushes behind you instead.  Brad Pitt's wackadoodle casting is so Hollywood anyway.

5.  Apparently the cold, clear water we were fishing in was drinkable - even though it was rolling over slimy rocks and our bacteria infested boots - but whatever you say Mr. Bear Grylls, Man vs. Wild guy.
6. You can take a baby with you, as long as you travel Indian style.  Our little CA-utie papoosie!!

7.  Fly fishing elevates your heroic status as a mom.  It bumps you up a notch above being able to bake pies and throw a spiral.
8.  Fly fishing ruins your desire to do any other type of fishing (that is if you ever had any desire to begin with.)  When you find your footing in the stream, cast out into the crystal waters and soak in the scenery within the mountain air, it is magical.

On our hike back to the suburban, Steve suggested that next year we get some horses and ride back into the mountains several miles, set up camp and fly fish for a couple of days.  Oh, okay, sure-thang honey.  Just find me some waders that don't leak and that nanny we talked about.
Wanna see what else we did on our trip???
Kayaking...or at least attempting to.  Nothing like a good t-bone to get things rolling!
 Early morning lazy jammie pile-ups on the couch.  That's not a typo.  I meant what I said - it was early. That's why when you travel with kids you call it a trip.  When you and your hubby fly solo it's a vacation.  
 Swing dance lessons from mom and dad after supper.  I'm not sure why we're teaching's not like they're ever going to go to a school dance.  Ever. Never.
 Ice Cream!!  Vacations  Family trips are incomplete unless ice-cream is imbibed.
 More mooching.
 Charlie discovered the beach.
And.....what else but more fishing??!!


  1. How beautiful! Looks like our kind of trip, minus the fly-fishing. Anytime we have gone fishing, only 2 of the eight of us will touch the actual fish. And our youngest is quite the ice cream moocher as well. Funny how it always works for the cute, youngest child. Can you imagine if one of the older kids went around grabbing siblings' cones?

  2. Beautiful pictures of a beautiful family. You described and ideal family "trip", although not too sure I could hold up to the reality. I will just live vicariously through you! I love reading all that you write! How do you find the time?!

  3. Thank you, Siobhan! I think about what to write while I'm jogging. Then, after everyone goes to bed, including Steve, I sit down and write as fast as I can - which is probably why there are always so many typos in my posts!

  4. Susan... I feel like we're living parallel lives in some ways! I too was surprised that I love fishing... who knew? Keith and I took the boys camping/fishing in Colorado this summer too and it was magnificent! Love the pics!

    1. Awesome!! I loved seeing the pics you took of your boys on your blog and FB this summer. They're mighty fishermen!!

  5. what an amazing trip and beautiful pictures!!! so glad you stopped by my blog... i'll definitely be following your adventures now as well!! i was actually born in kansas and both of my parents went to k-state... i have family that lives in a super small town in northwest ks... atwood... we love visiting. looks like you have plenty to be thankful for with all those handsome boys!! happy thursday!!! xoxo-julia

  6. Hi! I love your photos and blog! I'm following you from the hop on GFC, facebook & Twitter! Can't wait to read more :) You can follow me back at Daydreaming Realist

  7. Oh my gosh, what handsome boys!!!!!! My hat goes off to you girl raising 5 boys.I have my hands full with 2 boys. I found you on the weekend blog walk.

    1. Boys take a lot of energy, no matter how many you have!! But, I must say, they are awesome!!

  8. What fun. I think Charlie found something even better than that pacifer....ICE CREAM! Just darn cute.

  9. Hi! I love your Pics! Beautiful Family! ;D ... I like your Post & Blog. I am a new follower in GFC from Blog hop. I hope your visit!


  10. Thank you for stopping by! I would love to come and visit your blog!


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