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Monday, March 7, 2016

What you plan to do, and don't.

When we retired we received a full array of gifts for fishing enthusiasts. People knew we were moving on a lake in Oregon, a short canoe ride to the dunes that separate our house from the great Pacific Ocean. So, fishing was on the horizon for us as an activity we could definitely get involved in. We had spoken of the possibilities for months.
Everyone was as excited as we were. Yes, catching our own fish, canoeing to the Ocean, walking the beaches, these were activities we looked forward doing in our retirement.

The trunk of the car carried our goodies that December 2002 toward our destination, poles and jackets, hats, and fishing boxes full of tackle gear. We stopped at a gear store in Gold Beach on our way to Port Orford and bought our first rain jackets and rain boots. People had warned us about the copious rains we would experience.

Our children tried our gear before we did. For days, that first wet Christmas when the whole family experienced their first Oregon winter of torrential rains and hurricane-force winds day after day, whenever the rain stopped and we could venture outdoors, my children and grandchild spent time trying to catch fish on the two docks on our property. Ten days of rain, with occasional sunbursts made us appreciate every second we could open our doors and walk outdoors.


When the weather got better, we took walking trips to the local commercial dock to see boats hoisted up and down for their daily catch of salmon, tuna, or crab, marveling at the hard work of these folks who risk their lives each time they go off fishing. We then brought home fresh-off-the-boat-catch and cooked it the way the fishermen suggested.

Never had better fish.

The next Christmas my daughter in law gifted me with an All-Clad Stock Pot, big enough to make cioppino for a crowd. Every time I look at it I'm tempted to go clamming and fishing and crabbing, and put it all together in that lovely pot. Instead, I purchase my seafood, appreciative of the work others have done to bring it all to my table.

Up the road, we were tempted to go crabbing on this dock many times. Crabbing looked interesting. With minimum effort you could catch your quota of crab in the amount of time that it might take you to open up a tuna can. Fresh crab never looked this good, and this easy, and this inexpensive.

We never did try to catch crab. We watched for a while, and decided we were way too hungry to wait around. So, we turned to Tony's Crab Shack, notable for fresh crab prepared any way you wanted. Thirteen years later, we still admire families spending time with their loved ones on a cool morning, typical of this area, with snacks and heavy coats, throwing the crab cage into the waters and waiting for crabs.

Our fishing gear and our canoes are still in and around the gazebo by the docks, waiting for visitors to get active and enjoy the thrill of fishing and canoeing. We, Hubby and I, just haven't got much taste for either.

Though, thinking back, it was a great start to our retirement adventures.

25 comments:

Maggie May said...

It sounds a great place to go fishing (in between the storms).
I'm not sure if I had to catch my own fish, whether I'd be able to eat them!
As you can imagine...... I'm a sentimental city *girl*!
I suppose anyone hungry enough would do it.

Maggie x

UIFPW08 said...

Ciao Nonna Rosaria un saluto dalla Sicilia.
Maurizio

Helen said...

My Daughter's partner Steve grew up in a suburb outside of Portland. His father loved the outdoors and saw to it that Steve and his siblings experienced every conceivable activity Oregon offers. After his parents divorced his Mother purchased property in Waldport right on the Pacific!! When it's crabbing season we feast on the bounty Steve carts back to Bend. How lucky are we?

Have a lovely week, Rosaria.

dianefaith said...

I guess we can't expect the free rein parts of our lives to be as straightforward as the programmed parts. I planned my retirement to be all about simple living and self-sufficiency. That hasn't worked out as dreamed, either. But, like you, I am closer than I was.

Vagabonde said...

I think that to like all these outdoor activities, like fishing, one must have been brought up that way. To me, supporting the local restaurants and fishmongers in your area seems like a fine idea.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Rosaria ... interesting to think your lifestyle might have been slightly different - but the gear is there for visitors or family ... and yes - buying it straight from a fishing shack makes sense! Lovely place to live and experience all weathers ... cheers Hilary

the walking man said...

I read a Detroit article about a pothole/sinkhole that stayed in place so long that people actually were fishing in it. I doubt it was big enough for a canoe though. I often wonder if retirement is about place or perspective.

ellen abbott said...

I find fishing to be boring for the most part. but the canoe I would have put to use.

Tabor said...

It is interesting I find as I age and venture into new territory to find that the idea is sometimes more exciting than the actuality. But that is true with many things in life. We (my husband) are a big crabbing and fishing family.

Rian said...

Wonderful retirement plans! Opportunity still there any time you choose to participate. I love to fish (we had a fishing camp on Grand Isle in Louisiana when I grew up), but haven't had much of an opportunity since married. Thought I might try some fly fishing after retirement... but that hasn't happened. Crabbing sounds fun too!

troutbirder said...

Funning how things can change and turn out. My plans and activities turn from hunting and fishing to birding in a blink of an eye. Whoda thought...:)





















yaya said...

The only fresh crabs around here are at the hospital on a busy day! Ha! I think back on many stages of my life and realize the things I did and then decided to go a different route were many and varied. You've had an interesting life and what a wonderful pic on that dock! Enjoy that delish fresh fish no matter how it gets to your table and I know you're wise to let others enjoy their fun while you enjoy watching them have it! I wish you many more adventures in retirement!

joeh said...

Funny how we don't do things when they are right at our door step.

I think I'd try that crabbing for sure, we caught them by the dozens of my mom's dock in Md. for years and years, sure do miss it.

Dr. Kathy McCoy said...

It's so interesting what we think we're going to do in retirement and what we end up doing...I thought I was going to get back to cooking clean and fresh, the way I did in my less complicated youth. But no....well, at least, not yet. But I have a well-stocked kitchen, just waiting, and, of course, inspiration from your recipes!

#1Nana said...

We're coming back to Port Orford for May and bringing our kayaks. I'll paddle over to visit you!

Friko said...

Oh dear me, yes.
All those wonderful things one promises oneself to do in retirement seem to get put in a box somewhere, waiting, waiting . . . .

Somehow, there’s also less time in retirement or perhaps it’s the reduced energy levels?

Enjoy your fish dinners. You’re keeping the fishing industry alive.

Diana said...

Rosario, you stopped by my blog a few weeks (months?) ago, and I was so happy to see your comment and your lovely face. Just wanted to say a quick hello! I am a full time working, solo mama these days, so not much time for reading or writing much, but I treasure you!

Amanda Summer said...

Interesting how we plan for all sorts of things that don't end up panning out. I'd rather have someone else catch the fish and prepare it for me too!

A Cuban In London said...

From planning to doing... :-)

Greetings from London.

Hilary said...

I learned to enjoy fishing when I had that opportunity. It's a peaceful way to spend the hours.. and maybe get dinner out of it. But I was never surrounded with shellfish. I would love that best about your area.. and the incessant rain the least. All in all it looks like a wonderful spot.

Midlife Roadtripper said...

I've been to that Tony's Crab Shack! Summer before last.

Your retirement sounds like it was a wise choice. Fresh fish cooked right away? So good. And that soup? I can imagine you know how to do that well. Thanks for this visit to your world.

Midlife Roadtripper said...

I've been to that Tony's Crab Shack. Summer before last. Great food and much fun.

I'm pretty certain you are not alone in having retirement plans change. I think of many who buy those huge motor homes to travel the continent and then it sits there after one or two trips.

So it goes, eh?

Sally Wessely said...

I couldn't help but smile with that grim smile that comes from knowing the truth about what you were writing when I first read this post. When Jim retired, he also was gifted with much fishing gear, including lessons for fly fishing. We also thought we would spend many happy days fishing. I wonder if we went fishing more than once after we retired. I even wonder where all that gear is. I hate to say we also lost interest in so many ways, but on the other hand, I do love to fish.

Terra Hangen said...

Yes, that was a great start to your retirement adventures. We retirees get to change our minds, whether it is about fishing or any other activity. Hurray for choices.

LindyLou Mac said...

As always an interesting post Rosaria, there is never enough time for everything one is interested in,