THREW Mikes EyEz

Original Writings, Images, Video and Artworks of Mike Hartley

Something to wish for

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I started fishing at a fairly young age. I think it was around 6-7 years old at Sandy Pond in Sandy Creek NY at my aunt and uncle’s camp. A good size area in front of Lake Ontario. I never got a chance to fish with my father. My uncle taught me how to fish in freshwater. We would visit and I’d spend from sunrise to sunset fishing.

First from shore. Learning how to bait and cast. I remember one time I was just casting with no bait on, just a hook and sinker, reeling it back in quickly after each cast. Probably was about an hour into practice and it was starting to get dark and I heard the door shut on the camp so I knew I was going to be called in so I threw it out again and this largemouth bass hit it and I reeled him in. My uncle comes down after seeing me fight something and asked what I caught him with. I said a hook and he looked like I was being smart with him and being he was a longtime Navy man like my father I quickly said I was just practicing casting and didn’t have bait on. He smiled and said you’re going to be fine when you do start using bait then.

I wish I had the chance to fish with my dad. Photo by Mike Hartley

My Uncle Frank was blown off the deck of the West Virginia at Pearl Harbor. A tough nut who was his own man. Married my Aunt June late in life. But I degrees. Uncle Frank would then let me take the rowboat out to the pond and the time alone was helpful in many ways because at that age my father had passed and I was struggling as a 9-year-old who liked alone time to think. I remember being on the water and either fishing or boating was very good therapy at the time.

We didn’t share a lot as a family when we had that loss. I could see the pain for years it caused my mon to lose her spouse in her early 40s. My sister withdrew quite a bit and I had people telling me I was the man of the family. Yeah right, the smart thing to say to a 9-year-old.

My Aunt and Uncle’s rowboat in 1969 with me at the helm. Photo by Shirley Hartley

I remembered a lot of the above because I shared a very difficult event with one of my best friends the other day. I thought I had shared it before but apparently, I hadn’t because he was pretty shocked and said you never shared that before which for us (friends for 5+ decades) is pretty rare.

The title I used today is something to wish for. It doesn’t have to be fishing but each father needs to have that special time with their sons. I’ve been blessed with a long life so far and had time with my son. And now my son is getting ready to have his own son.

Being I was winging most of my fatherly skills as I helped raise him and his sister (my better half is responsible for their good traits) he at least knows what worked well and what he would like to improve on.

That is one of the few things I wish for in life, that my children have a better life, opportunities, and happiness than we did and that their children are even more fortunate.

Random Thoughts of the Day.

  • Don’t you just hate erroring on the side of caution?
  • I’m going to break down and get a prescription pair of sunglasses.
  • It’s a TOP-DOWN weekend. On the convertible that is.
  • I don’t ever recall, not looking forward to a Friday.

Author: Mike Hartley

With a lifetime and a half in the Newspaper industry I'm preparing for my retirement career as an Artist, Writer, Photographer and Video content provider. I'm a proud father of two wonderful children and I'm still married to the first girl I fell in love with and probably only one that would have me.

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