When I was a kid, my family would take an annual summer vacation to Rice Lake in Ontario, Canada. My parents were both high school teachers, and so taking a week to go to Canada was easy.
My dad and his brothers all love to fish. I was raised fishing; catching pan fish, bass, and catfish. They treated fishing like a job: wake up early, go out and fish. Come in for lunch, then go back out and fish. Come in for dinner, and then go back out and fish.
And the fishing was pretty good! We would fill our basket, cook up some of it, and take the rest home. That was par for the course.
When I went to college, my tastes changed a little for what was relaxing to me and what I considered to be a true mental and physical vacation.
But I love my pops. I love spending time with him and this our thing!
For the last few years, we’ve taken a few other trips together and the fishing just hasn’t been as good. It seems that, globally, fish populations have declined.
We still treat it like a job. Wake up around 6 or 7am, pack a lunch, put the boat in the water, and stay out until near sundown.
It’s a lot of work and hassle dealing with cold weather to fish like that. And when the fish aren’t biting, it’s easy to question why I’ve chosen to spend my “vacation” this way.
In fishing and in life, it’s not enough to love the results. Because when the results don’t come (whether it’s a matter or time or a matter of luck) you’ll spend the majority of your time frustrated (and forget to appreciate your dad). When you love the process, you know you’re on the right track.