Friday, April 23, 2010

Trout opening remembrances

GRAYLING-The annual trout opener group is in the process of gathering for another year of friendship, good food, stories-some good, many oft repeated-a nd memories of those no longer with us.
I think it's this last group that has put our group in a quieter frame of mind this year. While many "regulars" will drift in throughout the day, several of us arrived a day early for the chance to compare notes since we were together last year.
Sometime this afternoon, during lunch, we'll pause for a moment to remember Brooke Bennett, Mike Caparon, Fred Roeser, and John Long.
It was the 92-year-old Long that turned over hosting the opening lunch to Clarkston resident Bob Ward with a simple request: Please carry on the lunch.
Long said via phone this winter that he had definitely fished his share and that his tired legs would no longer allow him to get in or out of the river.
So with the sun's warmth, the river close by and the rest of our gang ready to hear the old stories again, along with some new ones, the opening day tradition lives on.
A little later, we'll get in the river one more time to continue the season that means so much to us.
As the fly drifts silently by, each will pause in his own way to remember a time when life was different and this special time was shared by those no longer with us.

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