Fish in a Lake


Growing up, my father had one close friend who had a lot of money. I mean like Wall Street, top of the building kind of rich. They were good friends, and seeing how they were close, I got the chance to experience some of the finer things in life.

He had so much money for example, he once took a plane to Italy to pick up a pizza. Now, he told me that when I was a kid, so maybe he went to Italy for more then just the pizza, but the kid in me wants to think that he went for that specific reason.

Once in a while, we would take trips to his country house, which was basically like going through an old closet into Narnia. The place was huge; it made our average house seem like a card board box. He always had cookouts in his mansion, and loved to have us over for a good time and some laughter.

He began to tell us one day that he was sick of not having a nice lake by his house, so he had one built in his backyard. Not even kidding,  Our family could barely afford an above ground pool, but this guy managed a way to build something that I only thought the Earth could do.

The lake was very nice, and I have to tell you it was pretty big. It was a bit to chilly to go swimming that day, but I did noticed some fishing rods in his basement so I thought I’d take it upon myself to see if the fish happened to be biting.

I asked if it was okay, and he said he had no problem with it.  He didn’t have any bait so I’d have to just rely on the hook to do the work. I was an ambitious kid and thought I didn’t need any bait to catch a fish.

I walked down to the lake by myself while my father, and his friend stayed at the house for the BBQ. I threw out my cast, and instantly I had a hook! It was like the fish was going for a deep throw and was wide open in the end zone.

I began to reel in the fish, but the thing was huge and was giving me a lot of struggle. I began to notice some amazing colors on the fish, which was strange because we were in Pennsylvania. I mean this thing looked like a rainbow.

Finally, I got this colorful fish to land and began to run towards the house to show how fast I accomplished victory. I ran to the backyard and screamed, ”Look what I caught!” My father, and his friend turned around and turned white as ghosts. They began to scream, ”Put it back! Put it back! Put it back!” Confused, scared, and a little hurt that they weren’t proud of me, I ran back, cut the line, and let the fish go free.

Later down the line, my father explained to me why they reacted that way. It turns out that the fish that I caught was a very expensive fish flown in as a gift to my father’s friend. He told my father this, but said he didn’t mind me fishing because he figured there’d be no way I’d be able to catch that one fish in the huge lake with no bait.

I did in fact catch the fish, but now it is a story we laugh about every time we are together. My father also told me that his close friend and he were so surprised I caught the fish they thought I’d grow up to be a pro fisherman. To be honest with you though, the last fish I caught after that one was gold fish crackers.

(photo courtesy of Stagot/