Southbound but Sidetracked: God, Signs and Bugs

A mistaken path to salvation.
A mistaken path to salvation.

If road trips are about anything, they’re about being spontaneous. When we were kids, my cousin and I, when taking long, car-bound trips for family vacations, would call out “fish,” when we saw any body of water that we thought had even the most remote possibility of holding fish. I can only begin to wonder now how much anxiety-reducing medication my parents stocked up on prior to these trips, but I digress.

The problem with getting older is that you’re the one with your feet on the pedals and it’s so easy to hit the brake. I have a tendency to swing in churches when passing, in part to beg forgiveness for my many sins and in part to pray for, well… yes, fish. After the well-being of my family and friends of course.

Imagine my surprise when I swung in a church I happened to be passing and it had an empty, very fishy-looking pond right behind it. That, I was certain, was some offering from God.

Unfortunately I saw this church at roughly one in the afternoon, so needless to say the rest of the day was shot. I plied the shoreline with spinnerbaits, soft-plastics and the simple worm-and-bobber.

I was about to leave at about five o’clock when a man walked by. I asked him if the pond even had fish in it and he assured me that yes, it was stocked with bass. That did it, I was there until nightfall. I can’t blame God, she was trying her best.

20150628_203623_resizedNear the church was this cross made of PVC pipe. I can’t say for sure what it was marking and I won’t guess, but it’s a reminder that even the most ordinary things, with some thought, can be representative of something extraordinary. It gave me hope.

My best guess, and from bugging locals, is that these fish push deep in this hot weather, but if some stupid humans take road trips to Florida in July, there’s got to be a dumb fish or two hanging out in the shallows, I figured.

The T-shirts are going fast, so get ’em while you can. And yes, that means I’ve sold one so far online, but you never know when demand could spike.

If you know of any potion to stop the mosquitoes from eating you alive I’ll take all the help I can get. Or, if you know what these enormous Florida spiders are and how to avoid (I’ve been having nightmares about this) walking into one of their webs, that advice would be profoundly appreciated as well.

And lest it go without saying again, if you’re in Florida and want to fish for a good cause, shoot me a note at

I found myself a fish camp here for the night and will be back at it first thing in the morning.

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