Alas, we didn't exactly fill a creel this morning when my mom and I went fishing, but the day was enjoyable regardless. We drove up to my uncle's little RV trailer on the banks of Lake Guntersville and caught a few bluegills. Only one was really big enough to consider keeping, but since I'm the fish cleaner in the household, I quickly decided it was going back into the lake.
The sunscreen did its job; I'm a little more freckled, perhaps, than usual, but no sunburn in sight. And we really didn't get hot until around 11 am, and even then, the occasional breeze off the lake kept us from getting too uncomfortable.
It was nice to spend time with my mom doing something we both love to do. Unlike a lot of mothers and daughters, my mom and I have always had a close relationship, as much friends as parent and child. I suspect that if I'd been a more difficult or rebellious child, that relationship wouldn't have been possible, because my mom is pretty firm about being a parent to her children and setting boundaries. But I never felt constricted by her boundaries, and I'm very grateful to have had such a terrific mom all these years.
When my ultra-pragmatic father tried to convince me that I was wasting my time trying to write and get published, my mom was the one who didn't let me stop dreaming. She always wanted to be a writer when she was young, and she made sure I never had to give up my dream the way she'd given up hers.
When I sold my first book, she was out of town. The most vivid memory I have of that day was trying to track my mother down at the beach to tell her I'd sold a book. I reached her, finally, when I got home from work, and our conversation was short because she and her friends were headed to the beach. But it wouldn't have felt real without talking to my mom. Unfortunately, my father never lived to see that my goal of selling a book wasn't so unpractical after all. But I think he knows about it anyway.