The lake cabin tradition started when we were just kids. Mom would pack up the car and load us all in for a week away from it all. When we all began to m,arry-off and start families of our own, we each started renting our own cabins at various resorts. It was a good chance to see the whole family in a relaxed setting every year for a whole week.
One of the best memories I have of these cabin experiences was when Rob and I went fishing one night at Twin Springs Resort in Hackensack, Minnesota. We were both fathers of small children, so the chance to fish alone for a couple of hours was a real treat. We rented a boat and took it out near dusk. I don't recall catching anything that night, but I do remember laughing until I almost coughed up my spleen. I'm sure it was ridiculous, stupid man talk, but for some reason, it was just incredibly funny at the time.
Of course there were many other hilarious moments in the boat with Rob, as well as with my other brothers, Tom and Paul. Like the time that Rob, Paul and I took a boat out and set a lawn chair in it to accomodate a third body. I got the lawn chair for some odd reason, and everything was fine until Paul turned the boat on a dime. The chair retched and rocked and almost buckled under the stress. I came within inches of falling into the lake fishing with my bare hands. Luckily I was able to pull out of it.
"Oops, sorry man," Paul said as he laughed at his mistake.
After I picked my heart out of my stomach, I had a good laugh along with them. It was a bit like the Sanford and Son fishing boat. A little urban ghetto in the middle of the woods.
We will be up at the cabin in a few weeks when my brother Paul, my brother-from-another-mother Steve, and I will be able to carry on the tradition of fishing together at the cabin. And while the boating situation will never be the same with the sketchy third seat, I know that Rob will be with us in the boat just the same. He'll be laughing at the hook-finger sticks, the lost lures, the missed fish, the motor struggles, and the exaggerated fish stories of years past.
I'll miss him, but I also know he would want us to keep fishing together. So that's what I aim to do.