So when Brandon and I went to a free fishing derby to a fishing destination with little to offer in terms of scenic value seven years ago, it was our first fishing trip. Our day was not typical because we were skunked. This hadn't happened in a long, long time. Not a single bite to mention or write home about. Even experienced fishermen couldn't make up a story on this day - it was that bad in terms of action. Fortunately, our action, or lack thereof, didn't make a single bit of difference to Brandon. He was a perfect partner simply enjoying fishing as it should be, not in the catching, but rather in the experience of it all.
He learned how to cast a little and reel a little, all the while enjoying the nearby chatter of other little kids. Mostly, I watched and marveled at how happy he was just being beside me ... father and son, mentor and pupil. Our conversation was light during much of the morning and I couldn't help but think about my formative years and how this experience was something I longed for from my father. It is amazing where our mind goes when at water's edge with rod and reel tucked tightly at one's side.
Moments destined to be shared are rarely discovered until they have passed by and memory brings them back; and for this moment I was there alongside Brandon. We shared both moment and memory all within hours.
On a recent trip I was reminded of this day as Brandon and I headed toward our favorite Delta haunt. The light of morning set in red and orange, the color of a storm about to arrive, identical to the one we observed during our first trip. And now that Brandon is 10 years old it is incumbent on me to hold onto our first fishing trip because for some fathers and sons, this is a day they will never know.