Every moment happens twice: inside and outside, and they are two different histories. ~Zadie Smith
Yep, we survived the 27th Annual Louise Planinsek Fishing Derby, two Saturdays ago on May 7th. Did Kyle go? Of course. Did he really want to go? You know, I believe he did! After all, he asked me about it, and dictated the time we were to get up and be there for breakfast, although he never expressed an interest in camping out Friday night. Let me translate, that’s fourteen year old code for “I’m really excited about the fishing derby and I can’t wait!”
Kyle has always seemed to enjoy fishing, much like his dad and pappy. Since the first day of fishing this year, Kyle’s been going with my dad nearly every weekend. Let me tell you, that makes dad extremely happy, to spend time with Kyle, and to fish. If I had to choose, I’d pick hunting over fishing, but I do love a fresh caught trout.
Kyle’s allowed to participate in the fishing derby until he’s sixteen. It looks like he has another two years left. He can always join in eating and drinking (nonalcoholic beverages), and I’m sure everyone would love to see him regardless if he fishes or not, but the rules state he can’t fish past sixteen. However, he’d be really good at assisting the youngsters, if he’s still interested in attending the fishing derby by then. Of course, I’ve learned with a teenager, you never know.
On Saturday, Kyle did just that, he fished, naturally, but he also helped his cousins with their bait and casting. Kyle was surrounded by Hailey, Lila, Owen, Grant, and Olivia. In addition to keeping the lines untangled and the hooks prepped for a catch, I gave Kyle another responsibility, a huge one at that. What else could I possibly have expected from him? After all, his attitude was stellar and pleasant, and he was having a great time.
I told Kyle to be on the lookout for kids falling into the pond. It seems like every year one child manages to become submerged in pond water. Especially since Kyle was within arms reach of the little ones, he had to keep his eyes peeled. You know, I don’t believe I had to say anything. Kyle acknowledged my request with an “Okay” and continued fishing, yet I sensed he knew trouble is a real possibility and he was ready for it. Boy is that kid growing up!
Was there a child to fall in? You bet. This year, Grant, Casey’s step-son. He was okay and it didn’t seem to phase him. This happened on the opposite side of the pond from us, Kyle was off the hook (pun intended).
It was at that moment, I saw Kyle’s maturity take shape. He knew he was the older kid, not that adults weren’t all around at every two feet. Kyle also trusts his swimming skills, as do I. He was keeping an eye out for more than himself while fishing. He was helping more than himself. He was truly a little mature man.
To be honest, spending the entire day at the fishing derby from 7:00 am till about 9:00 pm was a long day, one I really didn’t want to go without getting some work done, yet, I’m glad I did. There were times I thought about bugging out to work on my dog scavenger hunt events for Thrill of the Hunt, but then I thought, I never get to hang with Kyle and He only has a couple of years left to fish. Plus, my parents weren’t there, again not that I didn’t have friends and family at every step, but staying was my way of showing Kyle we’re still a team, and I’m there to support him because he’s that important to me.
It was nice to see Kyle hang with his local friends. They kept the tradition of dodge ball alive. I did have to interject once. I watched Kyle hurl the ball at a few slightly younger kids. He certainly wasn’t trying to be malicious, Kyle was having fun and didn’t realize he’s gotten a lot taller and stronger than he used to be. I simply asked him to not throw so hard and certainly not at anyone’s face. He did give me a crappy little grin, like, “That’s how the game is won.” but after that, I never saw him face shot again.
We’ve had some ups and downs with these teenage years, but I’ll admit Kyle is a good kid! He’s a nice guy, a little sassy, but his heart is still much like his dad’s and great grandpap Walter’s, good and sincere.
As Kyle was waiting around watching the seasoned gentlemen make breakfast, someone spoke up and asked who was going to do the french toast. Kyle offered his hand and went to work. The guys were impressed. I wasn’t, I know what a good cook Kyle is and he knows his way around a skillet. Unbeknownst to that crew, I’ve had Kyle cooking since he was little. He did a great job and seemed to enjoy himself. They all joked around, and said Kyle was now expected to help with breakfast next year. I hope he does.
Now time for a funny, slightly scary story. While I was among Kyle and the kids along the pond’s edge, I was helping Grant bait his hook. To set the scene, Kyle had placed the earth worms on his seat directly behind him. Just as I migrated into Kyle’s space, I bent over to retrieve a fat juicy warm. I was met with something squishy and wet that hit me squarely in the forehead. Just a fraction of a second beforehand, I saw and heard a few people jump and yell “Watch out!” What was going on? Kyle instantly turned around in confusion too. What happened?
Kyle cast his line, without looking behind him, just as I moved in the exact location of the flying bait, causing it to hit me in the face with live, pond water covered group of warms strung on a hook! The nearby witnesses thought I got a hook in the eye, but by the Grace of God, I was only smacked with grossness. It took me and Kyle a minute to understand what happened, while everyone around looked upon us with freight and amazement. Kyle laughed, as did I, even though it was a serious offense. I know he didn’t mean it, but it’s true he could have taken out my eye. It was a lesson for all the kids and a rather unpleasant one for me. It was also partially my fault, I should have paid attention to Kyle, since I invaded his territory unannounced.
At the end of the night Cindy and Dave Planinsek, plus the rest of the Planinsek gang, who worked hard to organized this annually anticipated event, purchased a variety of toys and fishing gear for the kid’s raffle. Tickets are purchased and each ticket contains the name of a child. The booty is placed on several picnic tables for the children to see. Names are drawn and the children, with major excitement, approach the table to select a prize. This continues until all the items are claimed. I wasn’t sure if I should add Kyle’s name to the list or not, so I chose to purchase tickets, better play it safe. There were other items in addition to toys, such as fishing poles, tackles boxes and bags, hats, and such. Why not?
While all the kids settled down under the pavilion, I looked for Kyle. I asked around were that kid was located. Only because everyone was in one central location under the pavilion, where he was suppose to be. I eventually found Kyle hanging out by the volleyball / dodge ball court, talking with a few kids his age. Boy how times have changed!
Kyle used to be the first one, up front, ready for the drawing to begin. Now he was very blasé about it. I told him to join the crowd, which he was hesitant, but did so. I stood in the back, nervously waiting for his name to be called, knowing it was either a good or bad decision to purchase him tickets.
Finally, I heard, KYLE PIPER. He didn’t seem to hear his name. I walked over and tapped him on the shoulder letting him know he should go and get a prize. His response? He rolled his eyes at me and shrugged his shoulders like, “There’s nothing I want.” To assist and keep the once exciting part of the day in momentum, I pointed to the fishing poles and such. Without much effort, he selected a fishing pole. Kyle’s name was drawn a few more times, which he graciously gave to his little cousins to take his spot. At the end, I asked him where his fishing pole was? His response? “I gave it to Grant, he wanted it.” Okay, buddy, that was a nice gesture!
I love that kid! I’m already looking forward to next year, as I believe Kyle is. It’s days like that, that I’m grateful to have taken the time to spend with Kyle and to appreciate the little man he is and mature man he’s turning into.
Did Kyle catch any fish? He did, a very small blue gill. Now that was a definite laugh out loud moment. Aside from the three inch killer whale, Kyle had no other luck.
On another side note, Kyle woke up Sunday morning in a rather crabby mood. Maybe he had too much excitement and needed more sleep.