Monday, June 27, 2011

Campfire Fuel.

This is my campfire. Gather around. I will tell my story. Then, you will tell yours. Memory grade  --- that, is campfire fuel.

Everyone has a fish tale, right? Just like everyone plays the guitar. How true, or how good, is what must be figured -- fish stories are usually tall; the guitars usually out of tune.

And recently I've been noticing, I'm being told a lot of stories. One of mine jogs memories and then other stories come running, in old gym socks and tennis shoes, lapping hurdles of time and place -- even, death. My grandpa told me a story this week. It may not be his voice anymore, and I may not be the little two-braided girl asking for "a story about when you were little, grandpa!" No, now I'm a grown woman sitting on an old wooden chair reading typed words from my Grandmother. The computer plays its part, The Mystical Medium. But it is still my grandpa's story. 

After I wrote about my fear and fishing for pike, my grandmother wrote:


“When we had been married a couple of years, we decided to take a trip up to Minnesota to a little cabin on one of the many lakes.  Grandpa wanted to catch a pike.  It rained the whole time we were up there.  One evening Grandpa decided that he was going to catch a fish so he went down to the little pier on the lake.  It was too stormy to take the boat out so he fished from the pier.  Much to his surprise he got a fish on his line, but when he tried to reel it in the fish swam around the mooring and Grandpa couldn't get it loose.  He finally had to cut the line and let him go.  That was the only fish he caught and "didn't catch" the whole time we were there.  We bought a pike when we got home and grilled him in aluminum foil in a little butter and it was delicious.  He would have been so impressed with your catch.”

And so the story ends. A picked up pike at the neighborhood grocers...oh revenge, how delicious you are. 

I yawn..... 
.....not the story, but the hour is at fault. 

The fire is dying. Yet, there is another log to throw on; and, there is always another memory for fuel. Light lingers...it always lingers. Please, keep telling your stories. 

25 comments:

  1. Such a vivid picture you paint! I don't have a lot of memories from the outdoors...well except the time the ground squirrel crept into my sleeping bag for a midnight snack...oh nuts!

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  2. of a brown, a big brown, who lived in the hole under the bridge in town. He was too wary to be hooked most days, but if you went in the evening, as the sky turned purple, and the tourists left the breakwall to go get ice cream, then, just then you might have a chance. My father encountered him then, at just that hour, and his light rod and frail old spinning reel were no match for "the Brown". He was fishing spawn bags, and the Brown ran to the lake, taking all of my fathers line with it, until it was just him, and a fish and a knot on a spool. And if you listened ever so closely, you would have heard the slightest "ping".

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  3. yep, we all have stories to tell. I don't recall the one above so I am glad it was shared
    b

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  4. Sometimes...you make me think. The black and whites,their presentation...sick. Grandpa cool. Grandma thoughtful. This fishing business...grateful for your thoughts..rock on..

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  5. ...and as the smoldering wood popped it's last yawn, the final line was delivered from contented lips.

    nothing better than a campfire story :-)

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  6. Tall tales and fishing go hand in hand, like a good cheese board and a fine bottle of port.

    One needs the other to make it 'whole'.

    As usual, lovely stuff Erin.

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  7. Ah the tales of the one that got away and stories of uncaught wily leviathans,nothing better to share with other anglers,especially round a camp fire.

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  8. I love recording stories, especially if nothing more than for posterity. It is funny though, when you have an experience with somebody and you hear them telling the story to an acquaintance and its much different from what you remember. Sometimes it can really open up how someone really feels about you. JGR

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  9. Memory grade fuel, I like that. See you soon for a session around your firepit, candle, moonlight, lantern, flashlight, starlight, streetlight,embers....oh don't forget the ciders!

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  10. Trying not to speak for my wife, I deleted the comment above. Her account was unintentionally signed in.... so, to continue...

    "fish stories are usually tall; the guitars usually out of tune."

    I always assumed I was out of tune, not the guitar :)

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  11. Cofisher - ha! Hope you recovered from that 'midnight snack.'

    Fontinalis Rising - "until it was just him, and a fish and a knot on a spool." I like your stories very much...

    B - I'm glad it was too. Funny how a lot of stories are not shared until after death, eh?

    Herringbone - Ah, glad I stir things about in the noggin...mine is always a whirl. Yeah, those old photobook pages are the coolest! Thanks. :)

    Sanders - "...and as the smoldering wood popped it's last yawn, the final line was delivered from contented lips." Nothing better than that line!


    Tom - Thanks! And now I have a mind to eat some cheese; although, am thinking the port won't go over well at work!

    Mark - Indeed! Nothing like a fish story...and the "ones that got away" oft times make for better story fodder than ones caught, eh?

    JGR - You're right! That is fascinating to me. When I go out with my fishing partner, and he and I both write about it, the stories are usually very different. We focus on different aspects of the day, and it's always interesting to see what comes out. ;)

    sgb - I can't wait. 9 days. I'll have plenty of cider!

    d.nash - No worries on the comment. ;) You have a point on the guitar thing...it's not the guitar's fault! hehe

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  12. That's all my blog is really for is logging my fishing adventures. If you can call them that. Sometimes they are just rants or ramblings. Fish stories create bonds and if family members are the characters. They can live on long after they are gone.

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  13. Kev2380 - "Fish stories create bonds." I like that. And like you said, I really hope my stories outlive me!

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  14. Love those pictures of Grandma & Grandpa!
    Kristen

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  15. Kristen - I love them too, and it was your dad who scanned and emailed them to me!

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  16. E, you stone me.

    Thanks. Have to inhale a bag of Fritos now.

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  17. Flykuni - ha! I'm glad?! Thanks for reading and for the comment...enjoy the Fritos. ;)

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  18. Another great post...nothing beats a good fish story!!
    Jeff

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  19. As usual, awesome post! ...I mean log for the fire.

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  20. backcountryfishnerd - Thanks! And thanks for keeping in line with the metaphor. ;)

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  21. I'm just now catching up on my blogs reading after a fair stint of busy-ness. Happy to be able to put my feet up for a few by the fire...

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  22. Thanks for stopping by, Matt! Morning coffee around a campfire is sometimes even better than a nightcap....

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  23. the genes pass on and maybe the grandmother is reborn.

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