Tales from the Cabin
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Fisherwoman

How a devoted mom got over her squeamishness and learned to love blue plastic deli containers

By Deb Mallin
Published: August 1, 2006
LO-Mallin
Photo by Deb Mallin
Let’s get something straight. I think worms are disgusting. The only thing I have ever liked about them is that they are good for my garden.  
   
And so you can imagine my surprise and subsequent scream when I opened a little blue plastic deli container in the refrigerator and discovered bait instead of potato salad.
   
“What is this?” I demanded of my husband and 9-year-old son.
   
My husband’s reply: “This, my dear, is a little bit of heaven waiting to happen.”
   
My son thought this was hysterical. Together the two guys laughed until they cried.
   
I, on the other hand, closed the refrigerator and walked toward the family room in search of my book. I was no longer in the mood for potato salad.
 
After about two hours of reading, I noticed I hadn’t heard a peep out of any of my three children or my husband. No one had interrupted me with a question, a comment or a request.
   
This is rare in a family of boys. In fact, I wondered if everyone was okay down at the dock.  
   
My inner voice said sit down and enjoy the peace and quiet – it may not come again for another 10 years. The maternal side of me headed for the dock.
   
And that’s where I found them. Daddy and his three sons were fishing off the dock. I haven’t seen my husband this relaxed since – well since I can’t remember when.

And all three of my boys were quiet and content. My 3-year-old was fixated on the shifting clouds. My 6-year-old was mesmerized by the water gently splashing the dock and his little feet. And my 9-year-old looked very deep in thought until his pole began to bend.

“Got one!” he yelled.       
   
My husband moved to assist him. “Got it, Dad. No problem,” he said proudly. I took up fishing that very
afternoon.  
   
In all honesty, I’m still a little squeamish about putting the bait on the hook. But I’ll get there. And, my boys don’t mind helping.  
   
After all, these are the moments I don’t want to miss. It’s so peaceful fishing with my family. It’s just being together with each other in the silence, our poles, the fish – and yes, the bait in the blue deli container.  
   
As for the potato salad – I’ll make sure that those containers are always white and clearly labeled.

Deb Mallin likes the fact that while she readies snacks and lunch for the boys, they will put her live bait on the hook. What a deal!

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