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Old 04-04-2013, 04:48 PM
hairwing530 hairwing530 is offline
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Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: beside the AuSable River in northern Michigan
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Default Re: I Met Myself Last Night...

During my "can't sleep" reading deep into the journals of one Montgomery Jackson last night-- I'm into Volume III --I was reminded of a saying and belief that he, "Doc" Holship and my grandfather commonly held, and that was Responsibility has its time and place...

Now, on the surface, one could take it to mean that the more you work during your so-called "earning years," the more "worry-free" the existence later on. Not so... By their definition, as spelled out in Montgomery's Journal III, it was more akin to "All work and no play..." theory, in that when you're at "Trail's End" or some similarly placed northern cabin on the river, you had a "responsibility" to spend your "time" in a good "place"-- aka on the stream. I'd forgotten those words of wisdom, until late last night...

So, I laced up the old "swampers"-- spelled 16-inch LL Bean boots with plenty of mileage on them--slipped into my grandfather's barn coat and a favorite ball cap, and pointed the "Fish Truck" toward "Trail's End." The day was blessed with a warm sun and a cool breeze, and it wasn't long before the Speaker of the House and I were making the turn onto the old two-track.

With the quickening of the spring thaw and the worsening of the "track," I stopped the "Fish Truck" about halfway there, and decided we would hike the rest of the way in. The weather was perfect for it, and I needed to feel the sun on my face.

We were greeted by the sight of about two face cords of split oak and maple piled near the front of "Trail's End," not far from where the lumber sat tarped and waiting for the Spring repairs. It struck me as curious, since the two-track carried no signs of egress back to the cabin.

We opened the place again, just to continue the "airing out" ritual, and the Speaker was amazed at the wall ornamentation, decor and the like. After well over three decades with yours truly, she's partial to the "lodge look," and she thought the place perfect for its former owner. It was then that I remembered that she'd never been back to the little place known as "Trail's End," as it was a "fish camp" of the purest order.

It was while she was opening a short set of drapes in the "rod room" that she noticed it hanging from a peg-- an old Filson Packer hat with a fair bit of dust on it. Taking it down, she noticed my initials inside the brim and brought it out into better light before handing it to me. Here, after I'd thought it lost for well over a decade, was my classic Filson hat, one similar to those favored by the three men cited earlier in this posting, and one that had shared no shortage of "river hours" with me. An old friend lost, now found again!

We closed the lock on the old place as the clouds started piling up, the Speaker taking one last look at the horseshoe bend and me grinning like a kid at Christmas with my old/new head gear. It was as we passed the random pile of firewood that I finally took note of it-- the clue. There, sitting squarely cradled between two oak logs was the short section of a cigar, well-chewed on one end. It sounded a familiar note from my last visit, and provided a little more mystery to the place.

No doubt, all will become clear in the season ahead. For now, however, it's enough that my old Filson Packer hat again hangs on the rack, just inside my office door. All good...

Jerry, aka hairwing530

Last edited by hairwing530; 04-12-2013 at 06:09 AM.
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