Happy Father’s Day to Ray and Bob!
Stephanie: When I was 13, my family took a summer vacation to Newfoundland Province in Canada. We went on a day hike past a ridge line with pockets of snow near the top. My sister, Renee, said she wanted to try to hike to the snow. But the trail didn’t go up, it went around, no where near the snow. I was apprehensive about leaving the trail. What if someone yelled at us? But my dad encouraged us to try. We started up the ridge toward the snow and tried to get as high as possible. Dad and mom came with us, following behind. (Keep in mind that we hiked up a scree field, not a pristine meadow where our footprints would be seen for years. After we left that day, only the rocks we stepped had any knowledge we were there). And with that quiet push to follow our whim, my dad opened my eyes to the value of experiencing nature without filters and interpretation. When you follow a trail, you are taking the path chosen for you. There are usually reasons for that choice — to see something or avoid something. But nature cannot be controlled and going off the trail to find the raw aspects has value. That experience my dad allowed me to have also taught me that to best understand a rule, sometimes you have to break it. Thanks, dad!
Richard (as told to Stephanie): Every summer, my family would drive up to my uncle’s cabin on a lake in Michgan. It was there, off the dock, that my dad taught us (sister Annette and I) to fish. He started with the reel and line; how to tie the hooks; find worms; clean the fish. The water was so clear we could watch the fish deciding whether or not to bite. When we cleaned the fish, the scales would fly and we would get covered in shiny bits. Dad would let us use the knife and do all the cutting. When we cast to the right, the line would get caught in submerged logs. For hours each trip we caught sunfish and bluegill.
We love you, dads!