While fishing Sunday (there’s a shocker), I suddenly became overwhelmed by loneliness.
Not the need to talk to hear my own voice kind — I talk aloud to myself on a regular basis — but the deep down, needful lonely you have after a bad dream.
Trying to explain to myself why I felt so badly while doing my second favorite thing in life was making the normal side turn into that weird stuff people make out of eggplant and spread on perfectly good rolls.
So, the weak side took over.
The weak side took me by the short hairs at the back of the neck and led me to the nearest picnic table, sat me down and told me to change flies while I stared out at open water.
A warning here: Never stare through the bottom of your bifocals for an extended time; when you stand and refocus at a distance you’ll get dizzier than most government programs.
As the weak side let me ponder my loneliness and the vast ugliness of the number three fly box, it told me to explain the two best knots for attaching flies to your leader.
As I took the leader and fly in-hand, I started speaking aloud and showing to the emptiness how to do it.
Holy macaroni — that was it. There were no kids around to share this stuff with.
We had just sent one grandkid home, and the others were busy doing whatever they do at their houses, and Jane was doing time at job number two.
I had become an empty-nesting parent, grandparent and great-grandparent. How was I going to explain this bend in my grumpy exterior?
Quickly, before the normal side entered into freak-out zone, I looked about for kids of any size, shape or ability, and as life will have it, a gaggle of them showed up pulling a distraught mom with them.
We, her kids and I, had a blast, helping each other rig up with bobbers, weights and neon-colored stink bait.
It made my morning.
Their mom asked if it was worth the wait, watching kids grow up and move out.
I didn’t have the heart to tell her how lonely it was going to get.
Now for something completely different …
One of my absolute all-time favorite things about Moffat County has always been the people.
No matter where you go or how you get there, a smile is waiting just for you.
Sure, you can go ahead and complain about all the little inane junk that bothers you and only you, but the smile is still there. It’s not one of those stupid smiles you see on buttons or store logos. Rather, it’s an honest, “can I help, and how’s your day?” smile that you can’t find or beg for in the outside world.
So, if you wish or need to complain about something, go ahead. We’ll just smile back at ya.
And finally …
Please don’t tell any of my kids, grandkids or great-grandkids I miss them. We can’t spoil the grumpy old man theory.
Hey, you be careful out there.