By Judy Adams

Fishing has been a favorite pastime of mine as far back as I can remember. To me, there is nothing more relaxing then baiting that hook and tossing the bobber into the water and sitting lakeside in anticipation of that elusive “big one.” Some of my fondest childhood memories are the ones where Dad and I would get up early on Saturday mornings, and we would hike across the train trestle spanning the lake near our home to go to his favorite fishing hole. He used to say, “The early bird gets the worm or fish.” There we would sit for hours fishing and laughing until I got the hook caught in my fingers as I tried to bait those wiggly worms!

Dad’s tackle box always seemed to have just the right tools needed for taking out those hooks from my fingers and the fish, so as I grew up, I tried to keep my tackle box “at the ready” and to remember all the tips and tricks he taught me. Basic things everyone should have in their tackle box are: extra line in various weights for different kinds of fish; bobbers in large and small sizes; weights for getting your line to the bottom of the water; hooks of different sizes for big fish and little fish; stringers; wax worms; lures of various types; an extra reel pre-loaded with line; pliers; scissors; and of course, a first aid kit. Some folks like to add a map just in case they want to find a new fishing hole and some like to have maps that show the different depths of the lakes in their area. These are the things I always make sure are in my tackle box, but as they say: ”There is no better teacher than experience.” I recently learned the hard way that I needed to add – needle nose pliers and wire cutters!

A few weeks ago, while I was fishing, the wind took my bobber and line and wrapped it around my head. The bobber smacked me on the back of the head like a brick and the hook got caught in my scalp. This incident taught me there are a few more items that I needed for my “at the ready” tackle box! The doctors at the hospital got quite a giggle out of my situation when they asked which fishing partner caught me and I said “ME” as my Dad’s words of wisdom echoed in my mind, “Didn’t I tell you never to fish in the wind?”