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Posted on Jun 8, 2010 in Next Cast
Ah, Summer

Take the Pause that Refreshes

The more challenges and tragedies we face in our lives and in the world - oil spills, recession, war - the more we need our escape moments, our memory makers. That's the best thing about fishing: Whether you cast bait from a pier, dabble in fresh water or board your 60-foot sport-fisherman for a day in the Stream, you make instant, meaningful memories.

Memories of the kind you recite at family gatherings; memories you mentally whittle when you're old and gray. And you don't even have to catch fish.

I can remember beautifully starlit nights spent staring down at the shadowline of a bridge, working a live bait between the spans. I picture the marshy expanse, near my homeport, under a brilliantly blue sky. In my reverie I cast and watch my cork bob along with the current.

The feeling of expectancy, the colors of creation, the smells of salty water and mud, the quiet companionship of a friend - all can temper, at least briefly, the gloom-and-doom news reports, the fear, the uncertainty of our daily lives. And just as the sorrowful, untimely illness of a friend can demand we inspect and appreciate all we cherish, so too can a day - even an hour - on the water compel us to rethink our attitudes.

I don't mean to put a rosy glow on crises. Anyone in the middle of tragedy deserves all respect and empathy. But those of us on the sidelines may need to hear some upbeat words.

Fishing refreshes. Good memories balance our moods. They keep us focused on positive thinking rather than on our current culture of complaint. So fish early and fish often this summer, I say. Put concerns and heartaches in perspective and get lost in that wondrous outdoor moment. Then, let it linger.