Last week was our first fishing trip on the water this year. My father-in-law Gerry and I had been waiting all winter for this. Gerry had been waiting to put those 10 inch worms on a small 1 inch hook to catch the big one of the season! Although I had spent many years as a young boy at my grandparents cottage, fishing from the docks and dingy at Morgans Harbour, Port Royal, Jamaica, I have always been more content fishing with one of the nicest guys I know and watching him enjoying a day on the water. Maybe a fish or two wouldn’t hurt either.
So made ready we did, this beauty of a pleasure craft, a 14 foot aluminium 100 gauge hull with a brand new 15 HP Mercury engine. Its Gerry’s boat. After my mother-in-law passed away, he decided to get his own fishing paradise. Your’s truly drives the boat, I debated him, as I have the only Pleasure craft licence on board. Gerry has been wanting to hit the water the day the ice left it, after a cold winter and I had to beg him to wait until the water felt like a human temperature, before our little adventure. Off we went to Port Perry to indulge in what Lake Scugog had to offer. Gerry was on the dock, life jacket and Gilligan’s hat on before I pulled into the parking lot with the boat! Off we went to greet the catches of the day, which had not been too prevelant in recent years.
As the day moved on, I became aware of one of the bravest and strongest men that I have ever met. It was 4 years ago that Gerry had lost his wife to Cancer. It was 4 years ago that the pain that never goes away, came at us with a vengeance and since then, has brought many tears from our family. I watched him for hours. I watched the way he handled the lonely day and tried to smile as every bite from a fish broke the still waters. I saw his eyes as they starred at the years gone by and he often broke into conversation about a memory of his wife and himself. The way he smiled and struggled to laugh about a funny, loving memory with his wife and him. What courage to survive and get up every day with the thoughts of many years with my darling mother-in-law. This strong man is the one who looks out for my wife, myself and our 3 children, every single day, trying his best from every angle to always assure us that everything will be ok. I was so deep into thinking about this very loveable man, that he actually told me that there was a fish on my line and that it was moving. There was.
I have often said that as a Police Officer, I cried several times and I have never been ashamed of it. It shows that the hearts still beating. It’s a good thing that I had my sunglasses on while fishing because it was not the water from the lake that came onto my cheek, although as a teenager, I would have vowed it was.
The catches of the day were not big enough to thread a needle. We both laughed as inch by inch, another caught fish was measured. No Sir. The world record for Bass would just have to wait. After all, whats the rush. A few more fishing trips with Gerry smiling, is good enough for me.