Rather than pick one that I'd want to redo/alter (plenty of those in Drafts), I would like to relive a pleasant memory.
  1. My 40th birthday is soon (!), and so I've been thinking about 🎂 recently.
    Typically they kinda suck - I'm uncomfortable with everyone focused on me TBH.
  2. One that really sticks out to me was my 7th birthday.
  3. My father was a mechanic for Amtrak when I was very little, and spent a ton of time away.
  4. I was in 2nd grade, nearing the end of the school year.
  5. I tried to get out of going since it was my birthday, but got a hard "NO" from both parents.
  6. So off to school on the bus, and within the first hour my teacher asked me to go out in the hall.
  7. My dad was there, which shocked me, as he didn't miss work.
  8. He said we needed to go, I should get my stuff.
    So I did, and I started to get nervous. Did something happen??
  9. As we walked out to the parking lot, I saw a boat connected to the truck.
  10. "Are we going fishing??" 😳
    "Yes we are. It's your birthday, it's a beautiful day, and I don't want you sitting in school on such a special day."
  11. Oh man. When you're seven, Dad is (usually) a larger-than-life hero figure.
    And that was definitely the case for me. He was the heavy - nothing scared me more than "I'm going to tell your father when he gets home." And he worked a ton of hours so when he did have time at home he was trying to catch up on household duties and the yard, etc. "Quality" time was rare to that point.
  12. I was giddy. We drove out to a lake, put the boat in, and shoved off.
    In my memory reel, it was a perfect 70 degrees, the ☀️ was out, the lake was calm, the 🐟 were biting.
  13. I can still hear the water lapping up against the inside of the metal boat.
  14. He taught me how to bait a hook, how to get a fish off the hook, and even let me run the little outboard motor across the lake to a new spot.
  15. And he told me he was taking a new job, one that would allow him to be around more; that he wanted to coach my soccer team and take fishing trips like this more often.
    My mom was pregnant with my sister, and my little brother (2) was a handful to say the least.
  16. I was over the 🌙.
  17. We went home and had cake and ice cream and I'm sure I got a toy or something.
  18. But nothing compared to the time that was spent on the lake 🎣.
    Our lives changed from then on, in good ways (and bad, TBH).
  19. It's a cheesy line, but it's true - kids spell love "t-i-m-e"
  20. And that's my story. Hope to read yours soon.