Today is Tuesday, June 18, 2013 of a week proving itself to be a tough one for me. The culprit is the emergency appendectomy performed last Friday. True to the nature of appendicitis, it all came suddenly and “out of nowhere”. Hence the week of doing practically nothing physical while my body has time to recuperate.
To say summertime is my favorite time would be a colossal understatement. And June is the apex of the entire year in my world. I am invigorated by the extended hours of sunshine, the general effect of greenness everywhere and yes, even by the heat. If you think that’s weird, picture this person who thoroughly enjoys mowing grass, trimming sidewalks and battling weeds in the flower garden, regardless of where the Mercury rises in an old fashion thermometer or how full of moisture the air becomes.
Now if there is anything able to “crank my tractor” like all the aforementioned joys of summer, it’s fishing. I’ve never done much fishing from Christmas through January. The days are just too short and the weather too cold for me. Winter days are suited for reflection and planning and purchasing fishing tackle and lawn equipment at a good price. Most any other month is a good one for a trip on the water, but June is the apex of my fishing year because for me, fly fishing in a willow fly hatch is my passion. Did you notice the current date? Over the years, the 18th day of June stands alone among the 365 we are blessed with annually. Why? Because of a highly predictable larger than normal hatch of willow flies. This day finds me sitting on the back porch. Yes, those pesky-looking brown insects you see clinging to the wall are the long-awaited willow flies. As I write these lines, happy Purple Martins are swooping by near enough to hear the wind from their wings in a feeding frenzy on those fat and plentiful cyclical insects . Ah, an atmospheric picture of the aquatic frenzy in action right now a few hundred yards away on the surface of the Tennessee River. There are bream and bass fighting with each other to get to whatever may land on the surface.
Before I get too deep into wretchedness and gloom it was very helpful to stop and list some positive thoughts and reasons to be grateful. So, the following is a minuscule percentage of things for which I have to be grateful.
1) I’m lucky to remember dates; especially since names and faces are getting harder to match.
2) Having appendicitis is a condition normally reserved for young people; maybe I still have the body of a seventeen-year-old.
3) Who knows? A long day in the sun today might have induced more skin lesions for the dermatologist to freeze off.
4) There was no guilt about not clearing out the garage instead of going fishing since neither was a possibility this week.
5) I didn’t have to squirm in the boat needing to get to the bathroom while I waited for the 3 boats ahead of me to get onto their trailers.
6) No aching back tonight from bending over and dressing a “mess” of fish for supper.
7) No dilemma of what to do with the fish guts for a week until the garbage man runs again.
8) It will be a little longer before more artificial flies will need to be bought.
9) Nothing about the boat “tore up” today.
10) There will be no trip to the ER to remove an errant fishhook from my hand.
What are you grateful for today?