This post is not about Nirvana, or meditation, or any number of things that would be helpful and beneficial to your mental health. No, this post is about how I thought I was going to die this weekend. Well, maybe not die, but at least humiliate myself to the point where I hoped I’d die.
Last week I mentioned to my sister that I wanted to go fishing, but wasn’t going to try to go until this coming weekend. Her husband wanted to go fishing. My sister, who is not going to give up her weekend football addiction to fish, volunteered me for the trip. I love my brother-in-law. I totally do, so I should feel horrible, but I was so not happy about going with him.
He’s 10 years older than me which isn’t that much, but he’s always treated me like the most annoying younger sister in the world. This man has a long-suffering sigh to rival my mom’s. It wasn’t until about four years ago though, that he saw me as an adult. What changed? He was building one of those airplane hangar sheds. You know, those curved aluminum buildings that should be put together by professionals? Yeah, one of those. I and my family spent the entire summer helping them build it. It’s HUGE. We’re talking two stories. He was impressed by my work ethic, I guess, because ever since then he doesn’t treat me quite so condescendingly.
Of course, I feared all of my hard work would go to waste this weekend. He wanted to fish in his boat. I am not a water person. The last time I’d been in a real boat, I was 10 and had no sense of my own mortality. The last time I was in a sort of real boat, was a couple of years ago. My nephew and I took the pirogue out to fish. A pirogue…I guess is a bit like a canoe. It’s about 9′ long, 2′ wide. I was fine while we were paddling. The minute we stopped though, my nerve failed. I almost tipped us over a few times and demanded my nephew return me to the bank.
Me: Bryan, we have to go back. Now!
Bryan: Nanny, we’re already here. Look, the water’s only 6″ deep!
Me: I. Do. Not. Care. You turn this thing around and get me back to the bank.
Bryan: Stop moving! You’re getting me all wet!
Me: Go back, go back, go back. Phillip, I swear if you don’t stop laughing I’m going to KILL you! (Because my brother was on the bank about peeing on himself from laughing)
It was…bad. So when I saw my brother-in-law’s boat…the fear came back. His boat is a 12′ aluminum skiff thing. My first impressions? OMG…there’s two seats perched too high. Oh God, I am NOT sitting on that! Oh God! It wobbles! Please don’t let him take me to any alligator infested waters, please, please, please!
We got to the fishing spot he chose and…I calmed a bit. He’s an Eagle Scout, I can trust him. That was hard. I don’t trust easily. That’s why I’m a control freak, but after having a heart attack a few hundred times because he moved this way and the boat rocked, I calmed. Because I was fishing.
The cork bobbing on the water is hypnotizing. It has to be the sole focus of your attention because no one wants to go home empty-handed. Then I started to notice the little things, like…it was really quiet out on the water. We didn’t talk much, although we did joke around a bit and complain about the fish getting away from us. It was…relaxing. I forgot about the wobbling boat, I forgot about the fact that this water was NOT 6″ deep. I forgot that there might even be alligators because there were porpoises! And we were catching fish!
I even forgot that I’m Bella Swan White and thus have a sunburn from hell on my knees. It didn’t matter. I was even confident enough to move around a little. I mean, there was no way I was going to keep fishing with speckled trout slime on my hands and the only water available was the water we were fishing in. I was even confident enough on the trip back to the landing, not to clutch the side of the boat as though my life depended on it.
So I found my happy place in a situation I’d put myself in that I consider Hell on Earth. I have my brother-in-law to thank for that and I can only hope that I didn’t annoy him too much.
Do you have any relatives who always treat you as an annoyance, or still see you as a snot-nosed brat? Where’s your happy place?