I usually fish alone and am quite adept at “landing” a fish in a canoe. I have few worries and many thoughts when I fish.
On Saturday evening I paddled to my favourite fishing hole on Lake Huron with one of my nieces. It is an oasis of boulders and rocks. It was nice to have a paddler in front to make short order of the journey. We anchored in waves that were at the upper edge of what I might normally expose myself to. My niece seemed unconcerned and I longed for some good fishing. I ran the paddle and anchor as we moved about the shoal having decent luck. I say luck because it was my inexperienced 11 year old niece who was landing fish. I lost one mid-fight which she countered with a 3 pound smallmouth. I netted it and placed it over the side on the stringer which was where my lure ended up after my beautiful bass tangled beneath the canoe. I don’t recall if it was when I had to strip most of my old tangled line from my reel or the third time I pierced a finger with a lure that I started to pray. I’m sure it wasn’t a curse as “shit” was “sugar” for the evening.
The next two fish were as big as or bigger than the first. They were both caught on “her” lure her father gave me. By ten o’clock at night it was reclaimed by that side of the family. The fish on the stringer were not only larger than many I catch but also more numerous than my individual catch limit. My niece is my new lucky lure and she paddles so I might take her out again. She might read this but if she doesn’t I will tell her it is only for the extra fish but I need her. That’s the beauty of family. We do better together.
I’m sitting here with a sore thumb from the hook it met but it’s good. It reminds me of the fun we had. I was more excited by any one of her fish than most I have landed myself. She was giddy in her success and sent the odd questionably humourous remark my way. I maybe shouldn’t have tormented her on the water. I was adamant that no one would see me point at any as being hers. (Note to niece…your uncle has more in his belly so in all honesty, who ended up with more fish?)