Grandma's back yard in northern Michigan, had apple trees, old outdoor cellar doors, a little garden shed, and best of all grandpa's fish shanty. I was little enough to wiggle underneath the wooden runners that were used to slide it out onto the icy lake in winter. But in summer it sat in the grass and I could squeeze up through the bottom hole he fished through and sit inside on the bench, holding my breath while my brother and cousins ran to and fro trying to find me.
Inside, I could smell the stale scent of wood, tar paper, and the charred wood that had warmed Grandpa from the little stove inside. I could recall the times we'd bundle up, walk out onto the lake to see if Grandpa had caught any fish for dinner. Along the wall leaned grandpa's fish spear. Out on the ice, he would let it rest on the side of the shanty by a hook over the hole in the ice. When a fish swam by, he would spear it. My mother says he would also take the spear on a spring night when the sucker fish swam upstream and spear them in the river, bringing home tubs full of forty or fifty fish grandma would can.
Sometimes I order Rainbow Trout from the menu just to remember the smell and taste of it frying in the pan at Grandma's house well after dark.
Have you ever found an old tool, or piece of equipment in your father's or grandfather's shop, and wondered what stories it could tell?
Blog post by Anne Love-
Writer of Historical Romance inspired by her family roots.Nurse Practitioner by day.Wife, mother, writer by night.Coffee drinker--any time.
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