Tag Archives: fishing

#atozchallenge B is for Boat


by Lillian Csernica on April 2, 2019

Flannery O’Connor once said, “Anybody who has survived his childhood has enough information to last him the rest of his days.”

Today I am going to tell you a story about a boat. In the twelve hours I was aboard that boat, so many moments happened, each one raw material for a story all by itself.

When I was ten years old, my father took me on a fishing trip. He and some of his coworkers had pooled their money to rent a boat for the day, complete with captain, which would take them out to fish for rock cod off the Four Mile Banks near Laguna Beach, CA. My father loved fishing. I was still a bit of a tomboy at that age, so I was quite excited to be in on the adventure.

A fishing trip means you get up while it’s still dark out, drive down to the marina, find the right dock, and go aboard. I was the only kid on board. I learned later that my father’s co-workers weren’t exactly thrilled to have me along for the trip. Back then adults still believed in behaving themselves in front of children. Me being there meant they couldn’t drink and gossip and carry on the way they’d been planning. I still wonder if my father knew that, or if he knew and just didn’t care.

There we were, heading out of the marina, the sky still black and dotted with stars. I didn’t have much experience with boats, so this was a rare thrill for me. I sat on the rail, holding on to the strip of wood on the side of the main cabin that stuck out like a smaller rail. I watched the bow wave, marveling at the reflection of all the lights on the dark water. One good whitecap could have jolted me loose and thrown me over the side. I don’t know why the adults let me sit out there all alone in such a precarious position. Daddy was a twenty year Navy man. Maybe he thought I had enough Navy in my blood to give me good instincts aboard ship. If my mother had ever found out about this moment in my seagoing adventures, the closest I would have gotten to another boat would have been floaty toys in the bathtub.

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sloutdoorsmag.com

The captain took a liking to me. I think that had to do with me catching the first fish. It was a young shark about as long as my arm with eyes the color of pale jade. The captain declared me to be lucky, then asked me if I wanted to keep it or let it go. This was not an “eating fish,” as my father called them, so it seemed only right to let the shark go. From then on wherever I cast or dropped my line, I caught the most fish. Daddy found this hugely entertaining. Later on he told me my good luck did not endear me to his coworkers, who had placed bets on who would catch the most and the biggest fish. Apparently my catches counted toward Daddy’s total.

Then came the moment that was the polar opposite of all the joy I felt sailing along in the dark. Rock cod are considered good eating by humans and other fish. As we reeled in our catch, those other fish showed up and tried to steal them off our lines. At first I couldn’t understand why the rock cod were coming up with big red holes in their sides. Daddy told me to go up on the flying bridge and look out over the water.

Circling the boat were two thresher sharks. These are really not much trouble, but this happened right around the time when Jaws had hit the theaters. There I was, out in a relatively small boat, miles offshore, being circled by the two biggest sharks I’d ever seen in person. Scared the living daylights out of me, much to the amusement of the adults.

Why am I telling you this story? There’s a lot more to this day. I haven’t even mentioned the poker game. (The adults wouldn’t let me play. A) I was too young, and B) I was already too lucky!) Mine your life for these moments. You were there! You know the details that will bring those moments to life.

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Filed under #atozchallenge, bad movies, Blog challenges, Family, Humor, Lillian Csernica, memoirs, parenting, travel, Writing

V is for View


by Lillian Csernica on April 26, 2016

One of the best parts of travel is just standing there and looking at the view.  There’s so much to see, so many details, so many shades of color and meaning.

 

Cliffs along the California coast

Born and raised here, I am a California native.  When life gets me down, I go to the seashore and let the power of the elements make me feel better.

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Cypress veranda at Kiyomizudera

My #1 Bucket List item, accomplished.  This very spot is the setting for “A Demon in the Noonday Sun,” one of two stories I contributed to 12 Hours Later.  The view is truly spectacular in every season of the year.

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The Rose Window in Notre Dame Cathedral

There I was, standing in Notre Dame on a Sunday.  The clouds of incense were so thick it was like trying to see the window through fog.  Glorious.  There’s no other word for it.

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Fishing off the Four Mile Banks in Laguna Beach, CA

When I was in high school, my father and his friends from work would sometimes charter a boat to take them out fishing down by Laguna.  Dad took me with him.  The captain of the charter liked me because he thought I was good luck.  I always caught the first fish.

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Carlsbad Caverns

There’s a whole lot to see on the surface of our planet, but don’t forget to take a look at what’s waiting under that very surface.  When I was a little kid, my parents took our family to see the Carlsbad Caverns. Scared the daylights out of me then, especially when the bats woke up.  Now I can appreciate the beauty and wonder of the rock formations.

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rootsrated.com

 

 

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Filed under Blog challenges, Family, Goals, history, Lillian Csernica, memoirs, nature, travel, Writing